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China’s nuclear industry marks 60 years of development

China’s nuclear industry traces its roots back to January 15, 1955, when the central leadership decided to develop the country’s own nuclear technology. This decision laid the base for building what eventually became China’s civilian nuclear power industry.

On 15 December 1991, China’s connected its first nuclear power reactor at the Qinshan Nuclear Power Plant, to the power grid. In the wake of the Fukushima nuclear incident in 2011 in Japan, nuclear power construction was put on hold and ‘full safety checks’ of then existing reactors were carried out.

The construction resumed in 2012, China has built 22 nuclear power generating units in the past two decades. Currently 26 units are under construction, the highest number in the world.

The country has also more than 110,000 radioactive sources and almost 130,000 ray devices in operation. So far the industry has not experienced accidents on a serious scale similar to that of other nuclear generators in other countries.