China Enhances NNSA Authority

Members of China's parliament on Friday approved of a new law that enhances the power of the National Nuclear Safety Administration (NNSA) as the country's regulator for their nuclear power industry.

China nuclear mapThe NNSA is considered one of the smaller divisions of China's environment ministry and in need of an upgrade considering China's ambitious commercial reactor program. Currently, there are 35 commercial reactors operating in China with 20 more under construction. The country aims to increase nuclear capacity from 35 gigawatts to 58 gigawatts by 2020.

The new law “fully embodies our 'safety first' approach and reflects our image as a responsible power, and also our strong determination to develop nuclear energy and the use of nuclear technology using the highest safety standards,” Reuters news agency quoted NNSA official Guo Chengzhan as saying.

The law was passed during the same week in which the International Atomic Energy Agency sent a mission to the country for a 10-day review of China's nuclear power industry with regards to security concerns.

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