Canadian Nuclear Trade Mission to China in April helps to forge stronger partnerships among Canadian and Chinese nuclear companies

OCI President Dr. Ron Oberth greeting the Vice Premier of China, Mr. MA Kai, at the Canadian Pavilion at the Nuclear Industry China Exhibition on April 16, 2014 in Beijing. Standing to the left of Dr. Oberth is Mr. SHEN Lixin Secretary General of the Chinese Nuclear Society and to the right of the Vice Premier is Mr. ZHENG Dongshan, Senior Vice President of China General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGN). “The Vice Premier and I discussed the excellent collaboration between Chinese and Canadian companies on the CANDU nuclear power plant at Qinshan Phase III and the potential for future collaboration on an Advanced Fuel CANDU Reactor (AFCR) in Haiyan Region” noted Ron.
Author: OCI News Release
Date: 5/2/2014 12:00:00 AM

May 2, 2014 Pickering Ontario - The Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries (OCI), in collaboration with the Government of Ontario and the Canadian Government, has returned from a very successful nine day trade mission to China. The trade mission of 15 leading Canadian nuclear companies and government entities included meetings and tours with local economic development officials and nuclear companies in the Haiyan region of China. From Haiyan the Canadian/Ontario nuclear team traveled to Beijing to participate in Nuclear Industry China (NIC) 2014 International Exhibition in Beijing and welcome Chinese delegates at the high profile Canadian Pavilion. NIC is China’s premier nuclear exhibition and trade show featuring exhibits by more than 100 domestic and international nuclear organizations and more than 1000 visitors and delegates over four days. 

The Ontario government delegation was led by the Minister of Research and Innovation, Dr. Reza Moridi, while the Canadian government delegation was led by Mr. David Anderson, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Foreign Affairs and by the Canadian Minister (Commercial) in China, Mr. Kris Panday.

This trade mission was intended to build on the Canada’s close and productive relationship with China’s nuclear industry developed through the very successful construction of two CANDU units at the Qinshan Phase III site that have now been operating safely and reliably for more than 10 years. Building on this base of success Candu Energy (successor to the AECL Reactor Division) is working with China National Nuclear corporation (CNNC) on a program to exploit unique CANDU features by jointly developing an Advance Fuel CANDU Reactor (AFCR) that would be optimized to burn both recycled uranium from PWR reactors as well as thorium - a resource which is abundant in China. CNNC, one of China’s largest nuclear companies, owns and operates 43% of China nuclear generating capacity. In addition several Canadian suppliers on the trade mission strengthened collaboration with their Chinese partners on both Pressurise Water Reactors (PWR) and Small Modular Reactor (SMR) projects in helping China meet its rapidly expanding energy needs. 

“I believe that this trade mission will help to forge new partnerships among Canadian and Chinese companies by combining their nuclear expertise and capital resources in exploiting opportunities in both traditional CANDU markets such as Argentina and Romania as well as in third country markets” said OCI President Dr. Ron Oberth. “These projects represent significant opportunities for both countries.”

One of the highlights of the Trade Mission was the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between OCI and the Haiyan Nuclear Power Related Industrial Alliance in Haiyan on April 11, 2014 in Haiyan. The MOU will facilitate collaboration among some of OCI’s 180 member companies and the 70 companies in the Haiyan Nuclear Power Related Industrial Alliance in supplying equipment and services to nuclear projects in China and in other countries. In addition the MOU encourages collaboration between OCI and the Haiyan Alliance in promoting the further joint development and construction of Advanced Fuel CANDU Reactors (AFCR) in Haiyan region that would burn recycled uranium and thorium fuels in
order to expand China’s nuclear fuel resources.

Minister Moridi was pleased to note that “the MOU will provide increased business opportunities for Ontario companies and foster nuclear innovation among Ontario research institutes and universities. Ontario’s pioneering nuclear sector is ideally positioned to be a value-added supply chain partner in China and its success strengthens our economy at home.”

OCI signed a second MOU on April 17 with the Chinese Nuclear Society. This MOU will facilitate close collaboration among OCI staff and the leaders of the Chinese Nuclear Society on technical exchanges and on improving how we communicate the environmental and safety benefits of nuclear power to broad public audiences in both countries. Canada is pleased to welcome Mr. SHEN Lixin, Deputy Secretary General of the Chinese Nuclear Society, as a keynote speaker at the Pacific Basin Nuclear Conference that Canada is hosting in August of this year in Vancouver.

During the Trade Mission several members of the Canadian delegation met with senior officials of the CNNC at their head office in Beijing. CNNC is the owner/operator of two CANDU units at the Qinshan Phase III site in the Haiyan Region. The discussion focused on CANDU reactor operations and life extension issues. CNNC was particularly interested in Canadian utility experience in determining pressure tube life and the plans for refurbishing and extending the operational lives of Bruce and Darlington units. 

Several members of the Canadian delegation also met with a Vice President of China General Nuclear (CGN), a company that holds the largest share of nuclear power plants under construction in China with 46%. The discussion centered on building collaboration among CGN and key Canadian nuclear suppliers in completing and operating two more CANDU units in Romania – Cernavoda 3 and 4. A final decision on the project could be taken in the fall of this year.

Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries (OCI) is an association of 180 Canadian suppliers to the nuclear industry that employ more than 10,000 highly skilled and specialized engineers, technologists and trades people. OCI companies design reactors, manufacture major equipment and components, and provide engineering services and support to CANDU nuclear power plants in Canada as well as to CANDU and Light Water Reactor (LWR) plants in offshore markets.

Dr. Ron Oberth, President, Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries
905 839 -0073 or 647 407 6081,

Ms. Marina Oeyangen, Manager Member Services, Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries
905 839 -0073 or 905 706 5958,


Canada’s Nuclear Industry

Canada was a pioneering nuclear nation with more than 60 years of experience in the development and deployment of nuclear energy for both power generation and medical applications. Canada is the world’s second largest producer of uranium. The 22 CANDU nuclear power plants that have been constructed in Canada have operated safely and reliably for more than 40 years. Within Ontario nuclear energy supplies over 50% of the province’s electrical energy. Canada’s natural uranium and on-power fuelled CANDU reactor has captured almost 10% of the world market. 

By satisfying the very stringent regulatory requirements and quality standards of the Canadian nuclear industry, OCI companies have developed world class capabilities across a broad spectrum of the nuclear supply chain including: reactor design, project and construction management, precision manufacturing of specialized and safety-related equipment including various pumps and valves, design and supply of reactor control systems and full scope training simulators, as well as fabrication of steam generators and various heavy components and modules. OCI companies also have capabilities in supporting operating reactorsthrough reactor inspection and non-destructive testing, safety and risk analysis, and various operational support services.

Nuclear Energy in China

The Chinese economy continues to be the world’s fastest growing major economy (7.5% GDP increase in 2013) with increasing demand for energy to sustain economic and social development. The Chinese government has committed to cut carbon emission intensity by up to 45% from 2005 levels. In part this will be accomplished by increasing emission-free energy generation to 15% of total production by 2020. To achieve this goal, nuclear energy’s share of total electricity generation in China must increase from its current 2% level to 5% by 2020. 

hina currently operates 21 reactors with a total capacity of 17.8 GWe with a further 29 units (totaling 31.6 GWe) under construction (around 40% of the world total). By 2020, the total installed capacity is expected to reach 60 GWe. In September 2010, the China Daily reported that China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) alone planned to invest $120 billion US into nuclear energy projects by 2020. The world’s fastest growing nuclear program is planning to bring six to ten nuclear plants into service every year and could reach between 120-160 GWe by 2030 (more than total installed capacity in the USA today). In addition, China’s nationwide nuclear safety review following the Fukushima events in 2011 has called for safety upgrades to China’s current operating nuclear fleet, which offer very real opportunities to Canadian suppliers.

While the Chinese government has declared equipment localization in nuclear power generation (and other industries) as a key national strategy, there remain significant gaps between foreign and domestic nuclear technological capabilities, creating a demand for advanced technologies and services from foreign companies with proven track records.