YEREVAN (ITAR-TASS)–According to the head of Armenia’s Nuclear Regulatory Authority Ashot Martirosyan–the country’s nuclear power plant can operate safely for another fourteen years. Although the station’s safety standards are at par with accepted norms–all nuclear power plants of its generation need constant attention and improvement–said Martirosyan. Martirosyan said that measures to increase the security of the nuclear power station were taken before the plant resumed operation. A time period for the plant’s stoppage has not been scheduled. The plant–which is located 30 kilometers (20 miles) west of Yerevan–has one working Soviet-made reactor that supplies about 45% of Armenia’s electricity. The European Union–however–insists on the earliest possible closure of the station and it is ready to appropriate 120m euros (US$140 million) for this purpose. But Armenian Minister of Trade and Economic Development Karen Chshamarityan said that the station should operate until the republic is provided with alternative power sources. In early June–an EU official in charge of relations with Eastern Europe–the Caucasus and Central Asia said that the EU was researching possible alternatives to the nuclear plant–including a gas pipeline from Iran. The Medzamor reactor was closed in 1989 amid safety concerns following the 1988 earthquake; it was restarted in 1995–during a severe energy shortage.