Business / Companies

Chinese nuclear firms plan equipment, tech sales abroad

By LYU CHANG (China Daily) Updated: 2015-01-22 13:47

Mastery over fuel cycle gives Chinese companies an edge, say experts

With the companies that built the nation's high-speed rail system bagging deals abroad, nuclear technology and equipment sales are next on China's agenda.

Media reports have said that the government is considering a merger of the State nuclear trio: China National Nuclear Corp, China General Nuclear Power Group and State Nuclear Power Technology Corp. That move would be based on the merger of the country's top two rolling stock producers.

But the merger is thought to be unlikely given the sensitive nature of the nuclear sector.

Experts said the country will instead compete globally with its locally developed advanced nuclear reactor technology and the third-generation nuclear supply chain.

Liu Yongde, secretary-general of the China Atomic Energy Authority, said China has established a complete nuclear fuel cycle from uranium exploration and enrichment to the management of spent nuclear fuel.

"Only a few countries have mastered the complete fuel cycle, and that accomplishment will give China an edge as a nuclear power exporter," he said.

With new nuclear plants that will probably be approved in China this year, equipment producers are speeding up their efforts to design and make new reactors.

That drive will put the equipment companies on a growth trajectory.

The Hualong One reactor and the pressurized water reactor AP1000/CAP 1400 are now the standard reactors for both inland and coastal nuclear plants.

The CAP 1400 is based on US-based Westinghouse's AP1000, which is owned by Japan's Toshiba Corp.

The Hualong One was jointly developed by CNNC and CGN. The equipment manufacturers have been working to localize production of all the components for the CAP 1400 to make it an independent Chinese reactor.

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