A senior Iranian nuclear official says the nuclear power plant in Bushehr will become operational in 2009, as previously planned.

Deputy Head of Iran's Atomic Energy Organization (AEO), Ahmad Fayaz-Bakhsh said Tuesday that Iranian experts have been more actively engaged in the start-up process of the Bushehr nuclear plant over the past 18 months.

In the past decade, Russia has helped Iran build its first nuclear power plant, capable of annually generating some 1,000 megawatts of electricity, in the nation's southern city of Bushehr.

According to the Russian envoy to Tehran, Alexander Sadovnikov, the construction of the power station has been delayed for about a decade due to the 'sanctions imposed by Western powers'.

Fayyaz-Bakhsh described the Bushehr power plant's recent development as 'satisfactory' following the delivery of nuclear fuel from Russia, last year.

Press TV - Iran: Bushehr reactor operational in 2009