China plans strategic reserve of natural uranium

Updated: 2007-04-18 20:10

BEIJING - China plans to set up a national strategic reserve of natural uranium as part of a five-year plan for its nuclear industry, according to a document released by the Commission of Science Technology and Industry for National Defense.

The document, entitled the 11th Five-Year Plan for the Nuclear Industry, says China will encourage careful exploitation of domestic uranium deposits and improve its domestic production capacity.

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China also hopes to increase international cooperation on uranium exploitation and import more uranium from the international market to enrich its stockpile, it says.

The reserve will be linked up with a commercial stockpile system to ensure an adequate uranium supply for electricity generation, it says.

China began developing its nuclear power industry in the late 1980s to help ease an energy bottleneck.

China's State Council has adopted a strategy to ensure the nation's total installed capacity of nuclear power reaches 40 million kilowatts by 2020, accounting for four percent of the country's total electric power.

In 2006, China's installed capacity of nuclear power reached 6.85 million kilowatts, accounting for only 1.1 percent of the country's total installed power capacity.

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