The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Wednesday approved Pakistan's request for application of safeguards at nuclear power plant units K-2 and K-3, said a statement released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The approval from the international watchdog was given by its board of directors, added the statement.

K-2 and K-3 are pressurised water reactors with a installed capacity of 1,100MWs each and are being acquired from the People's Republic of China.

The groundbreaking of K-2 nuclear power reactor was performed by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in November 2015.

The project had been in the media spotlight for quite some time with representatives of civil society organisations raising a number of reservations over it, with the chief concern being the close proximity of the project to the city.

China is the only country physically helping Pakistan in building the reactors while international organisations are helping the country follow safety guidelines.

The K-2 and K-3 reactors are being built by China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) and other organisations. It would be built by using Hualong One, the CNNC’s third-generation nuclear reactor design.

The World Nuclear Association had earlier estimated the cost of the new project at nearly $10 billion.