LA PAZ – A technical commission from Russia’s Rosatom will arrive in Bolivia in the next few days to start planning the construction of a nuclear research center, President Evo Morales said Wednesday.
The goal is to build South America’s largest nuclear research center in El Alto, a city outside La Paz, Morales said in a press conference.
The technical commission’s visit was agreed to during the meeting between Morales and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, at the 3rd Gas Exporting Countries Forum, or GECF, in Iran.
Putin “does not have any problems” with helping make the center South America’s largest facility of its kind, Morales said.
Bolivia plans to invest $300 million in the project, Morales said.
The research center is part of a peaceful civilian nuclear power program announced by the Bolivian government in 2014 and supported by the International Atomic Energy Agency, or IAEA.
The center will carry out research projects in areas such as medicine.
The facilities will include a cyclotron for research and medical treatments, a nuclear reactor for research purposes, and a gamma irradiation plant, Morales said last month.
Officials confirmed on Oct. 28 that the nuclear research center would be constructed in El Alto after residents of the capital’s Mallasilla district opposed an initial plan to put the facility in their neighborhood.