Ukraine is set to complete the construction of a new permanent shelter over the exploded reactor at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in 2015, an official said Wednesday.
"I am sure that within the next two years, a facility will be set up. After that, we will begin the dismantling of unstable structures and extraction of fuel containing masses from the existing sarcophagus," Igor Gramotkin, general director of the plant, told reporters.
The project, an arch-shaped structure designed to prevent leakage for a century, has a budget of 2.1 billion dollars, Gramotkin added.
The Ukrainian government raised more than 720 million dollars for the facility's construction during a donors conference in Kiev in April 2011.
The No. 4 nuclear reactor at the Chernobyl power plant exploded on April 26, 1986, causing widespread radioactive pollution.
To prevent further leakage of radiation, Ukrainian scientists developed the existing cover over the reactor. Its service term expires in 2016.