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IAEA will continue cooperation with Kazatomprom in the field of nuclear energy

19 April 2023
IAEA will continue cooperation with Kazatomprom in the field of nuclear energy

On April 18, 2023, as part of an official visit to the Republic of Kazakhstan, the IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi visited Ulba Metallurgical Plant (UMP, subsidiary of NAC Kazatomprom JSC).

The delegation included Vice Minister of Energy of the Republic of Kazakhstan Zhandos Nurmaganbetov, Ambassador of the Republic of Kazakhstan to Austria Alibek Bakayev, representatives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan, CEO of Kazatomprom Yerzhan Mukanov, Chief NFC Officer of  Kazatomprom Dosbolat Sarymsakov and others.          

The purpose of the visit was to see the Low Enriched Uranium (LEU) Bank of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

 

The LEU Bank is an LEU reserve, owned by IAEA, stored in the LEU Bank Facility operated by UMP. It was created in 2019 to form a guaranteed stock of raw materials that could be used to produce nuclear fuel. This can be supplied to countries that cannot obtain the material through normal commercial means and under exceptional circumstances as decided by IAEA.

LEU in the form of uranium hexafluoride is the feedstock for making fuel for a standard light water reactor. The material is stored in sealed steel cylinders made of high strength steel. These are special certified containers that undergo rigorous testing and comply with all international safety standards.

"During the meeting with the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan, various issues were discussed, including those related to the development of the country's nuclear industry”, said Rafael Grossi, IAEA Director General. “Kazakhstan is a very important player in the world nuclear market, and the implementation of the Low Enriched Uranium Bank project is a good example of our successful mutually beneficial cooperation, as well as a confirmation that nuclear power is safe and beneficial. Also, I would like to note the high professionalism of Ulba Metallurgical Plant representatives, which they have repeatedly shown during this project. The decision to choose the Republic of Kazakhstan and, in particular, the plant for the creation of the IAEA LEU Bank was the right one, and now I am personally convinced of it".

"The significant geopolitical events taking place today in the world demonstrate that Kazakhstan's initiatives on non-proliferation of nuclear weapons put forward 30 years ago were timely, correct and played a major role in ensuring global and regional security, making an invaluable contribution to strengthening peace and stability in the Eurasian space. Having one of the largest reserves of natural uranium in the world and ranking first in its production, Kazakhstan stands for the development of peaceful atom under IAEA safeguards and supports international efforts to support the nuclear nonproliferation regime”, Zhandos Nurmaganbetov, Vice Minister of Energy of the Republic of Kazakhstan, emphasized.

In turn, the CEO of Kazatomprom Yerzhan Mukanov noted: “The placement of the IAEA LEU Bank in the territory of Kazakhstan creates a positive image of our country. The IAEA is a unique scientific platform, cooperation with which provides access to the most modern technologies, and Kazatomprom will continue our joint work in the development of the nuclear industry and nuclear technologies”.

“In 2023-2024, the Ulba Metallurgical Plant plans to recertify the cylinders stored in the IAEA LEU Bank. Filled cylinders will be recertified for the first time in the world’s practice. We highly appreciate the IAEA's decision to choose the Ulba Metallurgical Plant as the Operator of the IAEA LEU Bank and will continue to fully fulfill our obligations under the signed agreements”, - said Sergey Bezhetsky, CEO of UMP JSC.

The guests also visited the joint venture of UMP – Ulba-FA LLP, the plant for the production of fuel assemblies, where they got acquainted with the process of manufacturing nuclear fuel for nuclear power plants of the People's Republic of China. The plant was put into operation at the end of 2021, its design capacity is 200 tons of products in uranium. The implementation of the project allowed the nuclear holding to diversify production and obtain export-oriented high-quality products with maximum added value.

This visit is of a strategic nature for the nuclear industry of Kazakhstan and for the country as a whole and demonstrates to the international community the commitment of Kazakhstan to comply with all international requirements of the world center for cooperation in the nuclear field.

 

For more information, you can contact:

Kazatomprom Investor Relations Inquiries

Yerlan Magzumov, IR Director

Tel.: +7 7172 45 81 80 / 69

Email: ir@kazatomprom.kz

Kazatomprom Public Relations and Media Inquiries

Sabina Kumurbekova, PR Director

Gazhayip Kumisbek, Chief Expert of the PR Department

Tel.: +7 7172 45 80 22

Email: pr@kazatomprom.kz

Copy of this announcement will be available at www.kazatomprom.kz.

 

About Ulba Metallurgical Plant

Ulba Metallurgical Plant JSC is one of the world's recognized producers of uranium, beryllium, tantalum and niobium products for the needs of nuclear power, electronics, metallurgical industry and other fields of activity. The enterprise is a part of the National Atomic Company Kazatomprom

About Kazatomprom

Kazatomprom is the largest uranium producer in the world with natural uranium production in proportion to the Company's participatory interest in the amount of about 22% of the total global primary uranium production in 2022. The group has the largest uranium reserve base in the industry. Kazatomprom, together with subsidiaries, affiliates and joint organizations, is developing 26 deposits combined into 14 uranium mining enterprises. All uranium mining enterprises are located on the territory of the Republic of Kazakhstan and when mine uranium use in-situ recovery technology, paying particular attention to best HSE practices and means (ISO 45001 and ISO 14001 certified).

Kazatomprom's securities are listed on the London Stock Exchange, the Astana International Exchange and the Kazakhstan Stock Exchange. Kazatomprom is the National Atomic Company of the Republic of Kazakhstan, and the main customers of the group are operators of nuclear generating capacities, and the main export markets for products are China, South and East Asia, North America and Europe. The Group sells uranium and uranium products under long-term and short-term contracts, as well as on the spot market directly from its corporate centre in Astana, Kazakhstan, as well as through a trading subsidiary in Switzerland, Trading House KazakAtom (THK).

For more information, please, visit our website www.kazatomprom.kz.

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