Lithuania’s new government will decide by 15 May whether to build a nuclear plant, said Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius.

The country’s new cabinet must present a strategy for energy independence to Parliament by then, he told reporters in Vilnius.

Ignalina power plant

As part of its European Union (EU) accession agreement, Lithuania shut its Soviet-built Ignalina nuclear plant in 2009, forcing a reliance on electricity and gas from Russia.

While Hitachi won a tender to build a 1300 MW nuclear plant in Visaginas that would restore the Lithuania’s energy independence, 62% of voters in a non-binding referendum held in the Baltic nation in October rejected the project.

By mid-March, a working group would clarify the costs of achieving energy independence with or without nuclear power, said Butkevicius.

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