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The USA is 15 years behind China

In developing high-tech nuclear power, the USA lags 15 years behind China as state-backed technological access and extensive financing give Beijing an advantage.


The USA is 15 years behind China


China has 27 nuclear reactors under construction with average construction times of about seven years, much faster than other countries, according to a survey conducted by the Information Technology and Innovation Association, an independent research institute based in Washington.

"The rapid deployment of increasingly modern nuclear power plants in China shows that Chinese companies will have an advantage in incremental innovation in this sector in the future," the report said.

The US has the largest number of nuclear power plants in the world, and the administration of President Joe Biden considers this source of nearly emission-free electricity to be the key to combating climate change.

Chinese state-owned banks offer more favorable loans

After two large power plants in Georgia were shut down in 2023 and 2024, with a bill amounting to billions of dollars over budget, and years behind schedule, the construction of nuclear reactors in the United States stopped. The construction of a high-tech power plant was canceled last year.

China's state-owned banks can offer more favorable loans than banks in Western economies. China's nuclear power industry has benefited from sustained government support and localization strategies that have allowed it to dominate sectors such as renewable energy and electric vehicles.

The first so-called fourth-generation gas-cooled high-temperature reactor at Shidao Bay was brought online last December. The China Nuclear Energy Association claims that the project involved the development of more than 2,200 pieces of equipment that are the first of its kind in the world, with an overall localization rate of domestically produced materials of 93.4 percent.

Proponents of high-tech reactors claim they are safer and more efficient than current ones. Critics say some new reactors may lead to nuclear proliferation and material risks.


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