Uranium Week: Japan Returns

Weekly Reports | Aug 30 2022

News last week of Japan’s plans to restart idled reactors and build new ones provided a boost to uranium markets.

-Japan plans to restart more and build new next-generation reactors
-Only six Japanese reactors currently operating
-The news boosts uranium equities

By Greg Peel

In the wake of the 2011 Fukushima disaster, Japan has 33 remaining commercial nuclear reactors, and electric power companies have asked the Nuclear Regulation Authority to approve the reactivation of 25. To date, 17 have cleared the agency's safety review. Although 10 of the 17 reactors were reactivated after local consent was received, only six are operating.

Japanese nuclear policy has flip-flopped with changes in government in the interim, and a lot of resistance has been met at the local level to reactor restarts. But the situation has changed.

In a policy shift that aims to return Japan to a focus on nuclear power for the first time since Fukushima, Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said last week that the country will restart more idled nuclear plants and consider developing next-generation reactors.

Immediately following the announcement, uranium equities shot up up significantly.

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