The merger will work to the ad­van­tage of the nu­clear power in­dus­try.”

China Daily (Canada) - - ONE WEEK FREE SMART EDITION -

The suc­cess­ful re­struc­tur­ing of the rail sec­tor and the rel­a­tively smooth progress in the im­pend­ing merger of China’s top two nu­clear power firms are set to give new im­pe­tus for fur­ther re­struc­tur­ing of State-owned en­ter­prises, in­dus­try ex­perts said onWed­nes­day.

The main ob­jec­tive of the cur­rent phase of SOE re­forms is, how­ever, aimed at con­sol­i­dat­ing China’s nu­clear sec­tor so that it can com­pete with in­ter­na­tional peers for global projects, the ex­perts said.

Mean­while, the long-stand­ing pro­posal for a merger of China Power In­vest­ment Corp and the State Nu­clear Power Tech­nol­ogy Corp has crossed a ma­jor hur­dle af­ter it got the green light from the State As­sets Su­per­vi­sion and Ad­min­is­tra­tion Com­mis­sion, the Shang­hai Elec­tric Power Corp Ltd, a China Power In­vest­ment sub­sidiary said on Tues­day.

The com­pany said its par­ent has won ap­proval for the merger with SNPTC, but said the de­tails of the re­or­ga­ni­za­tion are still on the drawing board.

In Septem­ber the State Coun­cil, the coun­try’s cabi­net, had or­dered the merger of the coun­try’s twolargest train man­u­fac­tur­ers — China North­ern Lo­co­mo­tive and Rolling Stock In­dus­tryGroupCor­pandCSR Corp Ltd— to cut com­pe­ti­tion with one an­other and present a uni­fied front to bid for over­seas projects.

Nu­clear tech­nolo­gies are an­other pri­or­ity in the na­tional longterm strat­egy to achieve higher value-added ex­ports — for ex­am­ple, nu­clear and high-speed rail­way tech­nolo­gies with in­tel­lec­tual prop­erty rights.

Ex­pert said the im­pend­ing merger will kick­start work on sev­eral newnu­clear re­ac­tors and also open the door for more over­seas op­por­tu­ni­ties.

Lin Bo­qiang, direc­tor of the China Cen­ter for En­ergy Eco­nomics Re­search at Xi­a­men Uni­ver­sity, said the ap­proval has come at a crit­i­cal time, as the coun­try is go­ing to em­bark on a mas­sive nu­clear power plant pro­gram to op­ti­mize its en­ergy mix.

“The merger will work to the ad­van­tage of the nu­clear power in­dus­try, which is experiencing the fastest growth in the world,” he said. “Sev­eral nu­clear power plant projects are al­ready un­der­way and may are set for con­struc­tion later this year.”

He said that units 5 and 6 of the Hongyan River nu­clear project in Liaon­ing prov­ince, the Shi­dao Bay nu­clear demon­stra­tion project in Shan­dong prov­ince and units 5 and 6 of the Fuqing nu­clear power plant in Fu­jian prov­ince, are likely to be the first can­di­dates for ap­proval.

Mean­while, the con­sol­i­da­tion also sig­nals that a nu­clear trio has of­fi­cially formed in China — China Na­tion­alNu­clear Corp, Chi­naGen­eral Nu­clear Power Group, as well as the com­bined SNPTC and China Power In­vest­ment Corp group.

Com­pared with CNNC and CGN, SNPTC is a newen­trant in the mar­ket formed by the State Coun­cil in 2007 to han­dle nu­clear tech­nol­ogy devel­op­ment.

Though it in­tro­duced third-gen­er­a­tion nu­clear power tech­nol­ogy known as AP1000 from the US-based West­ing­house Elec­tric Corp, which is con­trolled by Ja­pan’s Toshiba Group, it does not have the li­cense for con­struc­tion and op­er­a­tion of nu­clear power plants.

But the com­bi­na­tion will cre­ate an­other big nu­clear power gi­ant to com­pete with the two tra­di­tional nu­clear play­ers, given that China Power In­vest­ment Corp is one of the na­tion’s Big Five power gen­er­a­tion groups with the qual­i­fi­ca­tion to op­er­ate and build nu­clear plants.

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