12.03.2019_No50 / News in Brief

Russia Signs Agreement To Build Four New Reactors In China

Plans & Construction

12 Mar (NucNet): Russia has signed an agreement to build four new nuclear power units in China, with two at the Xudabao site in Liaoning Province, northeast China, and two at the Tianwan nuclear power station in Jiangsu province in the east of the country.

State nuclear corporation Rosatom said in a statement that a contract for the technical design for the construction of Units 3 and 4 at Xudabao had been signed in Beijing on 7 March.

Rosatom also said a general contract had been signed for the construction of Units 7 and 8 at Tianwan.

There are four Russia-procured VVER-1000 nuclear units in commercial operation at Tianwan and two domestically developed CNP-1000 pressurised water reactors under construction.

Rosatom gave no details in its statement of the type of plant for the two sites, but the company’s director-general Alexei Likhachev was quoted last year by the state-owned Tass news agency as saying that all four units will be Generation III+ VVER-1200 plants.

The two countries signed initial agreements for the four units in June 2018.

In April 2014, the Xudabao site was approved for the construction of two Westinghouse AP1000 nuclear power units with the option of building four more units.

According to International Atomic Energy Agency statistics, construction of the two AP1000s has not yet begun. Russian media reports have said work on the site began in 2010, but was suspended after the 2011 Fukushima-Daiichi accident.

In 2016, China Nuclear Industry 22 Construction Company, a subsidiary of China Nuclear Engineering and Construction Corporation, said it had signed an engineering, procurement and construction contract for the two AP1000 units.

China has ambitious nuclear plans with an official target of 58 GW of installed nuclear capacity by 2020, up from almost 36 GW produced by 46 operational reactor units today.

According to Shanghai-based energy consultancy Nicobar, China’s goal is to have 110 nuclear units in commercial operation by 2030, but this target is likely to be adjusted in the next Five-Year Plan, the first draft of which will appear this year.

Nicobar said state-owned China National Nuclear Corporation has told the government China should start building eight new nuclear power plants a year before 2030 in a bid to make the sector profitable and sustainable.

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David Dalton

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