The Bulgarian Parliament has ratified the Agreement between the Government of the Republic of Bulgaria and the Government of the United States on cooperation regarding the construction of nuclear power at the Kozloduy Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) site and the Nuclear Program for civil purposes of Bulgaria. The decision, with 149 votes in favor, 50 against, and 3 abstentions, marks a pivotal step in Bulgaria’s energy strategy.

The proposal for the agreement’s ratification was included as an extraordinary point on the deputies’ agenda for the day, signifying the urgency and importance of the matter. The agreement involves cooperation on the construction of nuclear reactors at the Kozloduy NPP, aimed at enhancing Bulgaria’s nuclear program for civilian purposes.

While the ruling coalition remained silent on the matter, opposition parties, notably “Vazrazhdane” (Revival) and the Bulgarian Socialist Party (BSP), voiced sharp criticism regarding the adoption of American nuclear technology. Concerns were raised about the potential consequences of transitioning from Russian to American technology at the Kozloduy site, where currently, two reactors with Russian technology are operational.

The agreement with the United States represents a significant shift, especially considering Bulgaria’s historical reliance on Russian supplies and technology in the nuclear sector. The decision to partner with Westinghouse for the supply of fresh nuclear fuel further underscores this transition away from Russian influence.

Opposition leaders, including Kostadin Kostadinov from “Vazrazhdane” and Borislav Gutsanov and Rumen Gechev from BSP, expressed strong dissent, labeling the government’s actions as servile and a violation of European Union principles. Concerns were raised about the lack of transparency in the agreement’s signing process, as well as the perceived high costs associated with American nuclear technology.

Critics emphasized the potential risks and dependencies that may arise from relying on American technology for Bulgaria’s energy needs, particularly in light of geopolitical considerations. The opposition’s stance reflects broader concerns within Bulgarian society regarding energy security and foreign influence in the country’s nuclear sector.