Tuesday, Mar 31, 2015Tuesday, Mar 31, 2015

Top Chinese nuclear firm to buy stake in Australian mine

Published on Jan 20, 2014 9:01 AM

MELBOURNE (REUTERS) - China National Nuclear Corp has agreed to buy a 25 per cent stake in Australian miner Paladin Energy uranium mine in Namibia for US$190 million (S$242 million), locking in supplies as Beijing builds new nuclear plants for cleaner energy.

CNNC is the bigger of two state-owned nuclear power conglomerates, controlling nine of the country's 17 reactor units and working on an ambitious reactor construction programme to help China ease its dependence on coal-fired power.

The firm has agreed to buy 25 per cent of the production from the Langer Heinrich mine, which has a capacity of 5.2 million pounds of uranium concentrate a year, and has the option to buy further supplies from Paladin at market rates.

"I do believe, through the investment in the Langer Heinrich project, CNNC and Paladin will develop a long-lasting business relationship which is beneficial to each other and also bring long-term influence to the global uranium mining industry," CNNC Director-in-General for geology and mining Du Yunbin said in a statement.

Enjoy 2 weeks of unlimited digital access to The Straits Times. Get your free access now!