China is planning to build 60 or more new nuclear plants in the next decade, half of them in the next five years, a senior official told Reuters last week during the World Nuclear Association conference in London, UK, and one of the vendors will likely be Canadian engineering giant SNC-Lavalin.
In London, Zheng Mingguang, vice president and chief nuclear designer at China’s State Nuclear Power Technology Corporation (SNPTC), “said each of China’s major nuclear companies—SNPTC, CNNC, and CGN—would start building a minimum of two new reactors a year,” the news agency reports.
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“Zheng said the 60 new plants would include between six and 10 CAP1000 reactors, which are Chinese versions of the AP1000 made by Toshiba-owned Westinghouse,” writes correspondent Geert De Clercq. “The first batch of six will include CNNC building two new reactors at Sanmen in Zhejiang Province, where Westinghouse is set to complete construction of AP1000s for the plant’s first two units early next year.” Other reactors will be built at Haiyang, in Shandong province, and at Lufeng, in Guandong province.
In Montreal, meanwhile, SNC-Lavalin “said on Thursday it has an agreement in principle for a joint venture with state-owned atomic power and weapons company China National Nuclear Corporation and manufacturing conglomerate Shanghai Electric Group Co. Ltd. to design, market, and build the Advanced Fuel Candu Reactor (AFCR),” the Globe and Mail reports. The deal builds on a memorandum of understanding for “power generation, mining, and nuclear-related environmental projects around the world” that SNC and CNNC signed in July 2014.
The joint venture will be created by the middle of next year, SNC said, in an announcement that coincided with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang’s four-day visit to Ottawa. But at least one analyst said the deal may still take some time to deliver results.
“It is a very, very slow process,” said Chris Murray of AltaCorp Capital. “We don’t expect there to be any near-term financial impact.”
SNC formed its Candu Energy division in 2011 after buying the assets of Crown corporation Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. for C$15 million.
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