China May Approve Nuclear Plan by the end of June

1. Bloomberg – China’s state council, or Cabinet, will probably hold a meeting before the end of June to approve safety and development plans for the nuclear industry, according to Xu Yuming, the vice secretary general of the China Nuclear Energy Association. The government can resume approval of new nuclear plants after the plans are passed.

China suspended new nuclear projects after last year’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan crippled the Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant and prompted a global review of atomic energy plants. The policy has hurt China’s major nuclear power equipment makers, including Shanghai Electric Group Co., Dongfang Electric Corp. and Harbin Electric Co., which had long-term contracts frozen.

Construction hasn’t started on four nuclear reactors that were approved prior to the Fukushima disaster, according to Xu. The reactors are Yangjiang Nos. 4, 5 and 6, and Fuqing No. 4, he said. Two new reactors will begin operations by the end of the year, he said. The facilities at Hongyanhe and Ningde resumed construction after a nationwide safety inspection that started in April 2011.

The country may have 70 gigawatts of installed nuclear power capacity and 30 gigawatts under construction by the end of the decade, Xu said today. It may have 200 gigawatts of installed capacity by 2030, he said.

The 2020 target may be scaled back to 60 gigawatts to 70 gigawatts, Li told Bloomberg in October.

China will limit the number of reactors to be built on the coast, the State Oceanic Administration said on April 7 last year.

2. WSJ – The Japanese government is close to deciding whether to restart the reactor at Oi nuclear power plant, Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda said Thursday.

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