Chinese-Kazakh joint venture starts production of nuclear fuel assemblies


A nuclear fuel assembly plant built by a Chinese-Kazakh joint venture was put into operation in the city of Ust-Kamenogorsk in the East Kazakhstan region, the press service of China General Nuclear Power Corporation (CGNPC) Uranium Resources Co. Ltd said. 

With an operation period of 20 years, the project is jointly funded by CGNPC Uranium Resources and Kazakhstan’s national atomic company Kazatomprom. 

The project officially started in December 2016. It is designed to produce 200 tons of uranium nuclear fuel components annually, which are used for generating thermal power inside a nuclear reactor, Xinhua news agency reported. 

The fuel assemblies can satisfy the need of 8 million kilowatt nuclear power units. 

The Chinese and Kazakh sides have also carried out cooperation in uranium resource extraction, trade and nuclear fuel core processing. 

Kazatomprom is one of the world’s largest producers of uranium, with its attributable production accounting for 23 per cent of the total global primary uranium production in 2020.