French President Macron comes to Kazakhstan to play nuclear tricks on Russia

French President Macron comes to Kazakhstan to play mean nuclear tricks on Russia

French President Emmanuel Macron is touring Central Asian countries to negotiate an increase in uranium supplies for the French nuclear industry, Bloomberg reports citing two sources familiar with Macron's plans.

Kazakhstan became the first former Soviet republic on Macron's itinerary. The main issue that Emmanuel Macron discussed with Kazakhstan President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev was the supply of uranium for the French nuclear industry. Until recently, France was purchasing fuel from Russia and African countries.

Today, Paris expects to diversify its supplies to strengthen economic independence from Moscow.

It also appears, however, that former Soviet republics want to go beyond their dependence on Russia. French officials suggest the fighting in Ukraine has disrupted long-established relationships in the region.

 On November 2, the French president is visiting Tashkent, the capital of Uzbekistan. Uzbekistan holds approximately two percent of the world's uranium reserves and ranks 11th on this indicator.

It was the coup in Niger in July 2023 that pushed France to diversify uranium imports. Niger is the seventh largest importer of uranium to the world market. It is also the main source of uranium for the needs of the energy sector not only in France, but in the entire European Union.

Macron intends to invest in Kazakh and Uzbek companies engaged in uranium production. Representatives of 15 French companies involved in agriculture, rare earth metals mining, and energy accompany Emmanuel Macron on his Central Asian tour as well. This suggests that France does not want to limit itself to uranium and oil alone.

Macron and Tokayev also discussed plans to build a nuclear power plant in Kazakhstan. The republic does not have any of such plants. The government of Kazakhstan is considering its construction at the expense of foreign investors. The volume of investment in the project is evaluated at 15 billion dollars.

In 2024, Kazakhstan will hold a referendum on the construction of a nuclear power plant. It was originally believed that the republic would cooperate with Russia's Rosatom. Today, however, Kazakhstan can not conduct such cooperation with Russia due to foreign policy reasons an external pressure.

Kazakhstan has turned into an energy-deficient country over the years of its independence. The country has no access to cheap electricity which seriously hinders the authorities from developing industries and modernising economy.

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Macron in Kazakhstan
Author`s name Angela Antonova
Editor Dmitry Sudakov