Rising expectations for nuclear business in Asia

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has said at least 60 more nuclear power plants will come on line over the next 15 years. The fastest growth is expected in Asia, with India alone expected to register a ten-fold increase in nuclear generation by 2020 and China a six-fold rise.

“The current picture is one of rising expectations,” the Director-General, Mohamed ElBaradei told the organization’s Board of Governors meeting this week in Vienna.

The Agency’s ‘Nuclear Technology Review – Update 2005’ report signals a more favourable outlook for nuclear power than was predicted five years ago by the IAEA and the OECD International Energy Agency.

Based on the most conservative assumption, the latest report on the subject forecasts around 430 GW of global nuclear capacity in 2020, up from 367 GW today, translating into just over 500 nuclear power plants worldwide by then.

This represents a slight rise in nuclear power’s share in the world electricity market, to 17 per cent from 16 per cent, reversing previous downward estimates. Worldwide 441 nuclear plants are in operation and 27 are being built across 30 countries.