Canada and China Enhance Nuclear Cooperation
Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today announced that Canada and China have signed a supplementary protocol to the long-standing Canada-China Nuclear Cooperation Agreement that will help Canadian uranium companies increase their exports to China. Baird made the announcement during a signing ceremony with Liu Tienan, head of China’s National Energy Administration, in Beijing.
“Canada is committed to building stronger trade and investment ties with China, our second-largest trading partner,” said Baird. “Increased collaboration with China’s civil nuclear-energy market will give Canadian companies greater access to one of the world’s largest and fastest-expanding economies, creating new jobs, growth and long-term prosperity.”
Since 1994, when the Canada-China Nuclear Cooperation Agreement was signed, Canada and China have enjoyed highly successful cooperation in the civil nuclear sector. The agreement’s supplementary protocol will govern and facilitate the export of Canadian uranium to China, supporting China’s energy needs and Canada’s long-term economic interests and nuclear non-proliferation policy.
“Our government’s objective is to expand this mutually beneficial cooperation while respecting Canada’s long-standing nuclear non-proliferation policies and obligations,” said Baird. “Energy is a key pillar of our strong bilateral ties with China and a major opportunity for Canadians. This arrangement marries prosperity with safety and security.”
Nuclear energy production in Canada generates about $5 billion in annual revenues. Canada’s nuclear industry is responsible for 21,000 direct jobs and a billion dollars a year in uranium exports. Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the successful completion of negotiations towards this protocol during his trip to China in February 2012.