Nuclear industry needs clarity on AECL restructuring for continued growth
Thousands of jobs and billions in revenues at risk unless federal politicians take action
PICKERING, ON, May 3 /CNW/ - Canada's $6.5 billion a year nuclear industry, and more than 70,000 people working in direct and indirect industry jobs, could be in jeopardy if federal politicians continue to delay decisions about the restructuring of Atomic Energy of Canada Limited (AECL). The Organization of CANDU Industries (OCI) is calling for clarity on AECL so the industry can get back on track and capitalize on domestic and international opportunities in the growing nuclear power sector.
The thousands of men and women working in Canada's nuclear industry have been waiting since 2007 for the federal government to finalize plans for the restructuring of AECL. The delay in decisions has created uncertainty in the marketplace about the future of Canada's highly successful CANDU reactor technology, which has created serious problems for Canada's nuclear industry supply chain. The uncertainty has also caused the Ontario government to delay decisions about CANDU technology for the two new reactors planned for the Darlington site.
"Now that the federal election is completed and politicians are going to be getting back to work, we are calling on all federal politicians to work together to help Canada's nuclear industry regain its competitive position," says Organization of CANDU Industries General Manager, David Marinacci. "The men and women working in Canada's nuclear industry urgently need decisions about AECL so we can capitalize on the domestic and international opportunities."
Canada has been building reactors around the world almost continuously since the 1980s. This steady pipeline of business has kept our nuclear supply chain companies vibrant and fully mobilized. The strength of the Canadian supply chain is a considerable asset that will help ensure international contracts for CANDU technology.
The Canadian nuclear industry is a $6.5 billion a year industry, generating more than $1.5 billion in federal and provincial revenues through taxes, and more than 70,000 direct, indirect and spin-off jobs. The Canadian Energy Research Institute (CERI) recently reported that Canada's exports of nuclear related materials and services totalled approximately $1.2 billion in 2008.
The Organization of CANDU Industries (OCI) represents more than 165 Canadian companies supplying goods & services for CANDU reactors in domestic & export markets. OCI companies provide engineering services & manufactured components for the CANDU industry and although it functions separately from design authorities & utilities, OCI members participate in design, manufacture, construction & commissioning of CANDU plants here at home and abroad.