Chinese domestic and overseas uranium production remains limited, and cannot satisfy the needs of the Chinese growing nuclear fleet. With 38 reactors in operation (37Gwe) and 16 reactors under construction (21GWe) at the beginning of 2018, China is an important buyer of uranium and a key market for the group.
Orano stands as a natural uranium reference supplier to China General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGNP) and also supplies to CGNP uranium, conversion and enrichment services for the first core of the Taishan 1 & 2 EPRTM, as well as for the first 17 reloads.
Engaged since 2007 with the signature of an intergovernmental agreement on the back-end of the fuel cycle and a cooperation agreement between Orano and China National Nuclear Cooperation (CNNC), negotiations are now in their final stage. Objective of the state owned company CNNC – both a nuclear operator and in charge of all fuel cycle activities in China – is to start the plant commercial operation in the early 2030s, which means the launch of the project in 2018/2019.
Late 2016 CNNC and CGNP selected Orano for the supply of used fuel dry storage systems (horizontal NUHOMS®) for respectively Daya Bay and Tianwan nuclear power plants. Thirty-seven NUHOMS® dry storage systems will be delivered and installed on the two sites in 2019/2020, allowing the safe interim storage of approximately 1200 used fuel assemblies (PWR and VVER).