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Nuclear Monitor Issue: 

On January 15, 2010, an energy transformer exploded into bits and pieces at the Kola Nuclear Power Plant, located on the Kola Peninsula, in Northwest Russia. The incident led to a 50% reduction of power output from two reactor units leaving onsite spent nuclear fuel storage without energy supply. The authorities at the plant neglected to report about the incident.

WISE Amsterdam Kola Nuclear Power Plant is located in the south-eastern part of the Kola Peninsula and operates four VVER-440 reactors, commissioned in 1973, 1975, 1982, and 1984, respectively. The two first reactor units are first generation. The 30-year life span design designated for the reactors was extended by 15 years for the first two reactors. The life span of the other two reactor units will be expanded to so that they are in operation 25 to 30 years more.

"While the plant was operating at 1433 MW capacity, due to a failure in the energy transformer, two 330 kilowatt electric mains, which supply consumers in the Murmansk region, were switched off. Units 3 and 4 reduced their capacity to 50% of nominal output in accordance with the guidelines,” reported the press service of the Kola Nuclear Power Plant on February 3, 18 days after the incident took place.

'The failure in energy transformer' was in fact a powerful explosion which completely trashed the transformer, damaging the surrounding facilities in an 80 meter radius. As a result of the damage, not only were two electric mains switched off, but the energy supply to the onsite ponds holding spent nuclear fuel was also cut off, in effect stopping water circulation pumps and water cooling units.

The Kola plant personnel managed to restart the supply to the electricity mains within 1 minute and 14 seconds, employing a reserve supply. But the electricity supply to the fuel cooling ponds was restored only at 20:05 — more than three hours after the incident.

“The incident could have had serious consequences if there was “hot,” or recently unloaded fuel. Insufficient cooling of “hot” fuel can lead to damage in the fuel encapsulation and massive release of radioactivity into the pond with severe consequences,” says Andrey Ponomarenko, Nuclear Project Coordinator at Bellona Murmansk.

Nils Bøhmer, Director of the Bellona Foundation and a nuclear physicist, is concerned with the warning routings between the Russian and Norwegian authorities. The Kola Nuclear Power Plant is located only 200 kilometers from the Norwegian border. The agreement between Norway and Russia stipulates that Russia informs Norwegian authorities about accidents that can lead to transboundary radioactive contamination.

Source and contact: Bellona, PO Box 15, 191 015 St. Petersburg, Russia, Email:, Web:




Nuclear Monitor Issue: 

Russian leading business magazine 'Expert' reported on February 4, that Italian Enel may invest into construction of a nuclear power plant in the Russian region of Kaliningrad. According to the magazine, Enel and Russian 'Inter RAO' are in talks to set up a joint company to build two VVER-1200 nuclear reactors nearby the border of Kaliningrad and Lithuania. Lithuania is a member of the European Union. Both companies are not commenting on the issue presently. 'Inter RAO' is a Russian company dedicated to find EU-customers for electricity from Russian nuclear reactors. State-owned nuclear corporation 'Rosatom' (previously known as Minatom) owns 57,3% of 'Inter RAO' shares.

WISE Kaliningrad - This Baltic nuclear power plant was heavily criticized by environmental groups in 2009 when 'Rosatom' held public hearings on the construction of the reactors in Kaliningrad region. According to activists, the construction site is not appropriate, for instance because underground water is near surface while it must be at least 40 meters lower. The design of the reactor is new and has no confirmed safety record. Radioactive releases from the nuclear plant may affect the Neman River which runs to the Baltic Sea. The Baltic nuclear plant will be located right under an international airway but developers of the reactor design said they never analyzed the sustainability of the reactor in case of large airplane crash. Modelling was done only for a relatively small (up to 20 tons) airplane crash.

Furthermore the project of the Baltic nuclear power plant doesn’t have any realistic plan on nuclear waste disposal. According to the environmental impact assessment of the Baltic nuclear power project, done by a company owned by “Rosatom”, spent nuclear fuel will be transported out of the Kaliningrad region to a reprocessing plant. At the same time, there is no reprocessing plant in Russia which would be able to reprocess spent fuel from a VVER-1200.

An opinion poll conducted in 2007 demonstrated that 67% of local residents in Kaliningrad where opposed to the construction of the nuclear plant. Moreover, the region will fully cover its entiry electricity needs by 2013, according to the investment' plans of the local government, while the first reactor may go on-line in 2016 at the earliest. It is therefor likely that 100% of the electricity produced by the reactors will be for export, while local residents will take the risks related to reactor accidents and radiation leakages from the storage of nuclear waste.

According to 'Rosatom', the two reactors will cost around Euro 6 billion. According to 'Inter RAO', the price may increase up to Euro 9 billion including costs of additional infrastructure.

Source and contact: WISE Kaliningrad


Russia: 36,000 signatures to prevent reactor construction

Nuclear Monitor Issue: 
WISE Amsterdam

(October 1, 2009) Northeast of Moscow) were handed to the Russian Presidents’ administration. The signatures were collected among the inhabitants of the 30km zone around the proposed construction site, in the towns of Murom and Navashin. Environmental and anti-nuclear activists are still subject of state harassment.

Prior to handing the signatures to the Presidents’ Administration, the environmentalists presented them to the media at the Independent Press-Center in Moscow. According to Vasily Vakhlyaev, member of the Murom City Council, the results of the public opinion poll indicate that 95% of the Murom residents strictly oppose the construction of the nuclear power plant.

Vladimir Slivyak of Ecodefense reported on numerous shortcomings of the Nizhny Novgorod nuclear power plant project. For instance, it is unclear what the plans are for nuclear waste treatment. According to the project documentation, spent nuclear fuel will be transported to a plant, which does not exist and is not planned to be built. Thus, high-level radioactive waste which will present danger for at least 240,000 years and for which there is no safe disposal technology, may remain in Nizhny Novgorod region forever. So, what is actually under discussion – a nuclear reactor or nuclear waste dumping site? It looks like both.

Well-known scientist and member of the Russian Academy of Science, Alexei Yablokov stated that a simple nationwide switch to energy-efficient light bulbs would save so much energy that new nuclear reactors will not be needed. He called for cancellation of the nuclear energy development program in Russia stating it as dangerous, expensive, and uneffective. At the press-conference Yablokov said nuclear energy has direct effect on sickness and death rates.

Earlier, on September 1, over 3,000 of Murom town’ residents took part in an anti-nuclear rally where both local authorities and activists of Ecodefense criticized the project of nuclear plant and urged local citizens to not be afraid to raise voices.

And on September 4, two activists, Vladimir Slivyak, who co-chairs Ecodefence, and the group’s nuclear physicist, Andrei Ozharovsky, on their way to a public hearing, were plucked from the crowd and detained by police at a local precinct. They were given no reason for their four hours detention.  “They simply held us until almost the end of the (public) hearings and let us go,” Slivyak told Bellona Web. Materials the two were carrying with them regarding nuclear energy were taken from them during their stay with the police, and after the rally was over, they were released and their literature returned.

The rally was in protest of ecological groups, other NGOs and other members of the public not being able to participate in open hearings on the construction of a nuclear power plant in the Nizhny Novgorod region.

Aside from representatives of Ecodefence, members of other environmental organisations – as well as members of the general public – were also turned away. The police had formed a well fortified barrier around the building were the hearings were to take place. Local residents who turned out to oppose the plant at the open hearings, were not able to pass through even the first police cordon. City officials from the town of Murom – which is 30 kilometres from the building site – were also turned away.

The Nizhny Novgorod Nuclear Power Plant is included in the  Russian government’s “General Scheme for the Construction of Electric Energy Installations Until 2020,” but is currently only at the review stage.

It is assumed that the first state of the nuclear station will consist of two reactor blocks. Each reactor will supply 1170 megawatts of power. The first is scheduled to come online in 2017, but a site for the plant has still not been chosen. Two are under consideration – the city of Uren, which is in the north part of the Region, or Monakovo, in the Navash district near Murom.

Exactly a year ago, on September 16, 2008, Russia’s economic crime unit and the Federal Security Service (FSB) raided the Nizhny Novgorod offices of the nationally known Russian environmental organization Dront. They confiscated financial documents, topographical maps and computers from Dront's biodiversity preservation laboratory. The office is accused of under-reporting on its tax return. But experience from earlier attacks on environmental organizations suggested that the real motives for the raid were not tax related, but rather because Dront is an extremely active organisation that is vocal in its opposition to a gamut of environmentally dangerous projects, that are close to the heart of the local administration and its business cronies. Dront is also very active and instrumental in the fight against the plans for new reactors.

Source: Press release Ecodefense, 22 September 2009 / Bellona Web, 18 September 2008 & 7 September 2009
Contact: Vladimir Slyviak, Ecodefense

Rosatom is planning Baltic npp on EU border

Nuclear Monitor Issue: 
WISE Kaliningrad

The remote Russian region of Kaliningrad, located between Poland and Lithuania—both EU countries--may become home for a two-unit nuclear power plant. The State-owned corporation Rosatom (formerly Minatom) is planning to start construction next year and to put the first reactor on-line by 2016. But opposition in the region is growing and the federal government so far has not granted permission for the construction.

On July 11 in Sovetsk, a small town on the Russian-Lithuanian border, more than 500 local citizens took part in a protest against the construction of Baltic Nuclear Power Plant (NPP). Over two weeks, activists collected more than 1,000 signatures in an appeal to the Russian President against construction of the nuclear reactors.

The nuclear power plant is proposed to be built 18-km from Sovetsk and activists asked Rosatom to organize public hearings in this city, but nuclear officials rejected this possibility. Organizers for the protest campaign, including the national group Ecodefense and a local citizen’s group (uniting activists from several small cities around the Baltic NPP’ construction site), said there will be more protests in July and August.

Earlier this year, various protests were staged by environmentalists in Kaliningrad city, the regional administrative center located approximately 120 km from the proposed construction site.

EIA and first local victory of activists
In June, Rosatom announced a public hearing on July 24, as part of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) procedure in Neman, the closest city to the proposed construction site. It was also announced that the EIA of Baltic NPP will be publicly available for 30 days. But Rosatom and local authorities of Neman placed an unofficial 11-page copy of the EIA on the internet, instead of the official 180-page document with background information on reactor and the entire power plant, environmental conditions in the region, etc.

Environmental activists officially demanded to place “the full EIA on the internet so that all citizens in the Kaliningrad region have equal access to the document and are able to participate in a public discussion over Baltic NPP”. On July 4, Igor Konyshev - director of the Rosatom department responsible for relations with regions and public organizations – announced there will be no access to the full EIA via internet because there is no law demanding that.

Two days later, on July 6, Ecodefense unexpectedly announced it had placed the full 180-page EIA on internet. According to a statement by Ecodefense, “the copy of the EIA was produced without permission from any authority … an EIA must be available to everyone in order to understand what Rosatom is trying to bring into the region… the decision over a nuclear plant must be taken by citizens living in the area, not by the nuclear industry which always gets the profit and leaves the nuclear waste”.

Although Rosatom announced official public hearings only in Neman, a very small city with a high level of jobless people, local activists are putting efforts into organizing more hearings in several cities located in the 30km zone around  the nuclear construction site. The first local victory for activists was the July 7 decision of the city parliament in Sovetsk, where local parliamentarians announced their own hearing to be held on August 17. Later this summer, more city parliaments in the 30km zone will discuss the idea of holding their own hearings.

Costs, safety, electricity supply
On July 4, Rosatom organized a roundtable on Baltic NPP in Kaliningrad. Speaking on the financial aspect of the project, the deputy director of Energoatom (the State-owned national company that operates reactors) Sergey Boyarkin stated that the cost of decommissioning will be equal to the cost of construction of Baltic NPP. That will bring the total price of the project to 10-12 billion Euro (US$14-17 billion).

Last year Rosatom repeatedly stated the Baltic NPP would cost 5 billion Euro per two units (VVER-1200 design). But on June 25, state-owned news agency RIA Novosti announced the cost of the plant will be Euro 6 billion Euro. At the roundtable in Kaliningrad, it appeared that these numbers related only to construction costs and do not include decommissioning.

Another speaker at the roundtable in Kaliningrad was a chief-engineer of the Baltic NPP, Ivan Grabelnikov, who discussed the technical side of the project. According to Mr. Grabelnikov, there was some modeling done over the sustainability of the VVER-reactor under plane crash (size of a Boeing-747) scenarios and it showed that the reactor can be destroyed if an airplane crashes into a certain (not named) part of the reactor. Grabelnikov also confirmed that the probability of large accident with radioactive release is not excluded, but it’s small, he said.

Nuclear industry officials insisted during the roundtable that the Kaliningrad region cannot avoid the nuclear plant because its the only option to guarantee the security of electricity supply. The region is highly dependent on electricity and natural gas supplied by mainland Russia. But information coming from the local government in Kaliningrad paints a completely different picture. It appears that the nuclear power plant is not needed for local supply, but only for export of the electricity to the EU.

In December 2008, the governor of Kaliningrad, Georgy Boos, said a second unit of a power plant burning natural gas will be in operation by the end of 2010. According to a report by the Kaliningrad local government on development of the local economy, released in July 2009, the need for electricity in the region will be covered by 106% when the new unit of the natural gas plant is online. Presently, the first unit in operation provides 450 MWt.

Various reports in Russian business media suggested that Rosatom's attempts to create closer ties with European companies (including Siemens, EnBW and others) may be targeted at cooperation on the Baltic NPP. The Russian nuclear industry is probably looking for some kind of guarantee that electricity from the nuclear plant would be consumed in the European Union. Otherwise, it doesn’t make sense to put billions of Euros into a not-needed nuclear plant on the Russian-Lithuanian border.

The situation with the Baltic NPP is a unique one – there has been no official decision of the Russian government over the construction of this plant. It has never happened before in Russia that the official assessment process over a nuclear reactor project started before governmental approval. One of the reasons for lack of governmental approval may well be the lack of European guarantees.

According to both Rosatom (Konyshev) and Energoatom (Boyarkin), all documents required for the final governmental assessment of the Baltic NPP will be submitted by the end of August. In November this year they are planning to receive a positive conclusion. Construction license would then be issued on July 1, 2010, Boyarkin said during the roundtable on July 4.

The full 180-page EIA can be obtained at:

Source and contact: Vladimir Slyviak at Ecodefense.

Gas crisis abused by nuclear lobby in Slovakia and Russia

Nuclear Monitor Issue: 
Jan Haverkamp, Greenpeace EU energy campaigner

Shortly before the Russian / Ukrainian gas crises, the Kozloduy municipality had started a new offensive to re-open the closed nuclear reactors of Kozloduy 3 and 4. The mayor of Kozloduy sent a letter to the European and Bulgarian Parliaments. In Standart, a major Bulgarian newspaper, Head of the Kozloduy Exploitation Department Rasho Parvanov reminded on that occasion that "Even if permission is granted, to restart the units will take 6 months". Shortly before Christmas, it became clear that Kozloduy had not made any personnel redundant since the closure of the two blocks in 2006, in the continuing hope for a restart.

Greenpeace EU Unit - Then Russia and Ukraine cut off all the gas-flow to Bulgaria. On January 6, Bulgaria's president Georgi Purvanov announced to the BBC that Bulgaria would need to restart Kozloduy 3, 4 and had a right to do so under article 36 of the Bulgarian EU Accession Treaty, that leaves the possibility for emergency measures counter to the Treaty within a three year period after accession - though crucially, with consent of the European Commission. Purvanov said Bulgaria needed to reactivate the Kozloduy unit as "a more critical situation is hardly possible".

In the mean time, Slovakia had fulfilled its obligation in its Accession Treaty and shut down Bohunice V1's second reactor for good on December 31 in the evening. After an assessment by the G7 in 1992, Bulgaria and Slovakia were asked to close all VVER 440/230 reactors because of safety problems that cannot be repaired with upgrades, including the lack of a second containment. This obligation was included in the EU Accession Treaties of both countries.

Possibly inspired by the Bulgarian example, Slovak populist Prime Minister Robert Fico announced on January 10 after an emergency cabinet session that he wanted the reactor to be restarted to meet the crisis. In a short letter he had alerted the European Commission the day before that the Slovak government was contemplating the move. "Industry has had to severely cut production and provided there is no immediate change in the gas supply, the electricity sector will face a blackout that would bring the whole country to a complete crisis and standstill," Fico wrote in his letter to the Commission.

On the home front an around the clock information campaign from Greenpeace tried to explain to the Slovak population the harsh reality that nuclear electricity could not replace gas in any way. Slovak gas is mainly used for heating purposes, chemical industry and some transport. Less than 6% of Slovakia's electricity needs are covered by gas - virtually all of it peak-load that cannot be replaced by inflexible nuclear capacity. Greenpeace calculated that a restart of Bohunice V1 would bring per day several hundreds of thousands of Euros into the pockets of Slovak state operator JAVYS without addressing any of the gas emergency problems. The Slovak electricity distributors and the grid operator furthermore stated that there was no shortage of electricity, nor to be expected and that possible temporary shortages could easily be covered with imports.

Also the European Commission was not impressed. On January 14, DG TREN spokes-person Ferran Tarradellas explained to an amused Brussels press corps that re-opening of Bohunice V1 would be illegal because Slovakia's three year emergency clause in the Accession Treaty (article 37, similar to the one in the Bulgarian Treaty) had already expired and that it was unclear to the Commission how nuclear could play a role in meeting a gas emergency.

The Commission demanded Slovak Economy Minister Jahnatek to come with written proof instead of oral declarations. That same evening, Prime Minister Fico broke the line of his Economy Minister and announced that the decision would be postponed. Almost a week later, the idea was completely shelved.

On January 8, Bulgaria received support from Members of the European Parliament Ari Vatanen (France / Finland, active member of a Foratom organised nuclear lobby group of MEPs), Jan Zahradil (Czech) and Vladimir Urutchev (Bulgarian, former manager from the Kozloduy NPP) with a letter to Energy Commissioner Andris Piebalgs: "Now, the impact of the severe economic crisis is compounded by obstinacy and failure to take timely decisions that would have ensured safe, reliable, clean and affordable energy for today and the years ahead. We ask you to review the Kozloduy situation." On Sunday January 18, a small business-interest-led new political party organized around 6000 people to demonstrate in Sofia for the re-opening of Kozloduy 3 and 4.

Again, the European Commission was not impressed. At the same day, Bulgarian Euro-Commissioner Meglena Kuneva tried to explain Bulgarian parliamentarians that Bulgaria needs to submit a motivated detail request to the European Union and that the Commission needs to be convinced with arguments that there is indeed an emergency that can be addressed with such means. Bulgarian daily Dnevnik furthermore calculated that Kozloduy had spent already over 20 Million Euro in keeping the closed blocks in a state that would enable restart, apart from personnel costs due to keeping staff virtually in tact.

So, the discussion continues, but with gas starting to flow again on January 21, it is clear that chances for re-opening of any of the reactors remain close to zero. Greenpeace in Slovakia and the Green Policy Institute in Bulgaria reminded that larger energy efficiency and the use of renewable sources for heating purposes could prevent crisis situations like the one over the last weeks far cheaper and faster than any nuclear pipe-dreams. All it would need is political will and avoid being side-tracked by lobby groups.

Source: Jan Haverkamp, Greenpeace EU energy campaigner.
Jan Haverkamp, Greenpeace EU energy campaigner.

Andrea Zlatnanska, Greenpeace Slovakia energy campaigner

Petko Kovachev, Green Policy Institute, Sofia



Nuclear Monitor Issue: 

North Korea had three nuclear bombs.

(April 16, 2004) The New York Times has reported that A Q Khan, the disgraced father of Pakistan's nuclear weapons programs, has revealed to investigators that he saw three nuclear bombs in North Korea five years ago. Pakistan's government is said to have released details of Khan's visit to an underground weapons facility one hour from Pyongyang 3-4 weeks ago as a warning to states within its missile range. The leaking of such sensitive information in Washington appears linked to US Vice-President Dick Cheney's visit to Beijing where he hopes to persuade China to take a tougher stance on North Korea. The Bush administration had previously been frustrated by Beijing's reluctance to apply more pressure on its former ally. Cheney has presented the Chinese with its 'new evidence' but has insisted that the US is still committed to six-party talks but would soon be seeking "real results". (See also WISE/NIRS Nuclear Monitor 602.5572 "North Korea welcomes US delegation")

There are suggestions that Washington may also be seeking to influence the 15 April parliamentary elections in South Korea that are expected to decide the fate of President Roh Moo-hyun, who is mistrusted by the US for his soft line on Pyongyang. Khan's report will be difficult to verify given that Pakistani authorities have refused to allow questioning by the international community. It is also unclear if Khan, who is not a trained nuclear scientist, has the expertise to recognize an actual nuclear weapon as opposed to a mock-up.
The New York Times, 13 & 14 April 2004; The Guardian, 14 April 2004


NIRS & Public Citizen petition NRC.


(April 16, 2004) NIRS and Public Citizen have jointly petitioned the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to participate in the forthcoming licensing procedure for the proposed uranium enrichment plant in New Mexico. The groups are representing their members living near the site of the proposed facility who are concerned with the inconsistencies, misrepresentations and unlawful aspects of the application, including the lack of a strategy to dispose of hazardous and radioactive wastes. NIRS and Public Citizen also cited problems with the application in its treatment of water resources, national security and nuclear proliferation, the need for the facility and the cost of decommissioning the plant once it ceases operating. This is the third attempt by Louisiana Energy Services (LES) at securing a site for its nuclear plant - earlier attempts were withdrawn following intense public opposition.
Joint NIRS, Public Citizen & Southwest Research Information Center News Release, 6 April 2004


French PM pro new nukes.


(April 16, 2004) Prime Minister Jean-Pierre Raffarin confirmed his support for the construction of new nuclear power plants on 5 April. He told parliament that France should build the experimental 1600 MWe European Pressurized Water Reactor (EPR), claiming it was 'our responsibility to ensure the future of the nuclear option' and that he would request a parliamentary debate on the issue 'within the coming weeks'.
WNA News Briefing, 7-13 April 2004


Russian researcher sentenced.


(April 16, 2004) A weapons specialist for the prestigious USA-Canada Institute has been sentenced to 15 years imprisonment for espionage in a closed trial in Moscow. Igor Sutyagin was convicted of supplying an UK firm, allegedly used as a front for the CIA, with information on submarines and missile warning systems. Sutyagin's defense argued that the researcher's work had been based on publicly available sources and that he had had no indication that the company was as intelligence cover. Human rights activists in Russia and around the world have condemned the verdict and there are reports suggesting irregularities during the trial and political motivation for the trial and conviction. The trail judge is said to have given the jury incorrect instruction by asking them to determine whether Sutyagin had passed on information, which he did not deny, rather than whether he had passed on state secrets.
AP, 5 April 2004; BBC News 7 April 2004


Fund for sick nuclear worker not paying out.


(April 16, 2004) Four years after the US Congress passed a law to aid sick nuclear plant workers, the compensation fund has only managed to process the claim of one worker who was sent a check for US$ 15,000 despite the government earmarking US$74 million for the program. The Energy Department, responsible for the program, claimed during a hearing before the Senate Energy Committee that it would require more time and money to do a better job. Approximately 22,000 eligible workers filed for assistance yet only 372 have received feedback on their applications. Robert Card, the department's undersecretary said the agency needed an another US$ 33 million, in addition to the US$ 26 million already spent on the program this year to speed up the programs pace. Card and his assistant Beverly Cook have since resigned from their posts. Some lawmakers have recommended moving the program to the Labor Department, which already runs a program for compensating workers affected by radiation exposure.
Seattle Post-Intelligencer, 30 March & 2 April 2004


UK government advisers consider waste disposal options.


(April 16, 2004) Last year the Blair government appointed a committee on radioactive waste management to re-examine all possibilities to find an acceptable solution to the nuclear waste problem. The 14 options considered range from firing nuclear waste into the sun, placing it in Antarctic ice sheets so it sinks by its own heat to the bedrock, putting it under the Earth's crust so it is sucked to the molten core and burying under the seabed. The government estimates that its stockpile of high-level nuclear waste will soon reach 500,000 tons. The committee of Homer Simpson wannabes is apparently still considering all 14 options and has requested an extension of its deadline from end 2005 to mid 2006. We look forward to reading its final report.
The Guardian, 14 April 2004


Nuclear industry looks to Asia for survival.


(April 16, 2004) 18 of the 31 nuclear power units currently under construction worldwide are located in Asia making the continent a haven for predatory European, North American and Russian suppliers. Following accidents at Three Mile Island and Chernobyl, the number of new nuclear projects under development in the West was drastically reduced leaving the industry in peril. Now, the vultures are circling around Asia seeking new ground on an energy-poor continent. China is expected to build four 1,000 MW plants at a cost of US$ 6 billion as part of its drive to quadruple its nuclear capacity by 2020. The export of such sensitive technologies is prohibited in most nuclear supply countries but given the lack of business elsewhere, governments are re-evaluating their policies in order to secure lucrative contracts for their supplies. Even the U.S. is expected to ease its controls on China at this year and Germany is already considering selling China its Hanau plant.
AP, 10 April 2004; Reuters, 13 April 2004