Construction gets under way at Chinese sites

24 November 2008

Construction work has formally begun on two new nuclear units at Ningde and Fuqing, both in China's Fujian province.

Li Keqiang at Fuqing inauguration (CNNC)
Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqiang (second from right) looks on at the Fuqing ceremony (Image: CNNC)

Chinese Vice Premier Li Keqiang attended the inauguration ceremony for the Fuqing nuclear power plant on 21 November. A total of six 1000 MWe reactors are ultimately planned for the site, at a cost of 100 billion yuan ($14.7 billion). The first phase of the project will see the construction of two CPR-1000 units, scheduled to start up in 2013 and 2014, respectively. The CPR-1000 is an advanced pressurised water reactor (PWR) design developed by China from the Areva-designed PWRs at the Daya Bay nuclear power station.


Speaking at the ceremony, Li Keqiang described nuclear power as "clean and efficient, safe and reliable energy" and highlighted the importance of nuclear power construction for China's energy structure and energy security.


The plant will be jointly constructed and operated by China National Nuclear Corp (CNNC), China Huadian Corp and the government-funded Fujian Investment & Development Co Ltd, having respective stakes of 51%, 39% and 10% in the new plant.


Concrete at second Ningde unit


The Fuqing announcement follows the pouring of the first concrete for the second reactor at Guangdong Nuclear Power Corp's (CGNPC's) Ningde site on 12 November. Ningde Phase I, further up the coast from Fuqing in northern Fujian, comprises four CPR-1000 units costing $7.2 billion. Work officially began on the first unit in February, and with a planned construction time of 58 months apiece, the first two reactors are slated for operation in 2012 and 2013.