The State Nuclear Power Technology Co., co-funded by the State Council and four large state-owned enterprises including China National Nuclear Corporation, was launched in Beijing on Tuesday.
The new company is authorized by the State Council to sign contracts for third-generation nuclear power technologies transfer from other countries on behalf of China.
Experts say the establishing the company is a major move in the nuclear power sector, and indicates the country will begin to apply third-generation nuclear power technologies.
The registered capital of the company is fixed at four billion yuan (519.5 million U.S. dollars), with 2.4 billion yuan, or 60 percent, financed by the State Council.
The remaining 40 percent will be invested by China National Nuclear Corporation, China Power Investment Corporation, China Guangdong Nuclear Power Holding Co. Ltd, and China National Technical Import & Export Corp. Each of the state owned companies will contribute ten percent.
China National Nuclear Corporation and China Guangdong Nuclear Power Holding Co. Ltd are running the country's 11 nuclear power reactors currently in operation, while the other two have experience in importing large power generating facilities.
The new company is under the direct leadership of the State Council, and the chairman of board, party secretary and general manager of the new company will be supervised by the central government.
Wang Binghua, born in 1954, has been appointed chairman of board. He had previously acted as the general manager of the state-owned China Power Investment Corporation and the deputy general manager of China National Nuclear Corporation.
The company, prior to its official inauguration, had signed a framework contract on February 28 to buy four third-generation pressurized water reactors from the U.S.-based Westinghouse Electric Co., which also included technologies transfers to China.
Talks on the final agreement are still underway, and the official contract could be signed next month, according to Wang.
The four pressurized water reactors will be installed two in Sanmen City, in east China's Zhejiang Province, and two in Haiyang City, Shandong Province. The two sites have finished the preliminary preparations for the AP1000 project, said Wang.
Of the 11 nuclear power reactors operating in China three use domestic technologies, two are equipped with Russian technology, four with French technologies, and two are Canadian designed.
All 11 of the reactors employ second-generation nuclear power technologies.
The third generation program developed by Westinghouse is the only one to have received the final design approval from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission.
The Chinese government also expects the new company to develop self-owned, third-generation nuclear power technologies using technologies imported from Westinghouse, to build a fifth plant.
The present installed capacity of the country's nuclear power plants is less than nine million kilowatts, slightly more than one percent of all the power generating capacity in the country.
By 2020 China will invest 50 billion U.S. dollars to have nuclear power account for four percent of the total electricity generated by China.