First concrete was poured on 31 March for the basemat of unit 3 at China Huaneng’s Changjiang NPP in Hainan province after the National Nuclear Safety Administration issued a construction licence for Changjiang 3&4 (phase II) - both Hualong One units. The construction period is expected to be 60 months. Construction of unit 4 is scheduled to start in 10 months. Both units are due to enter commercial operations by the end of 2026. This is the first nuclear power project to be constructed in China during the 14th Five-Year Plan period. The total investment is estimated to be nearly CNY40 billion ($6bn).
The Changjiang plant is owned by China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) and China Huaneng Group. This followed an agreement between the two companies in June 2019 for joint investment in the development, construction, operation and the two reactors. China's State Council approved the construction of the units in September 2020. Huaneng will hold a controlling 51% stake in the project through its subsidiary Huaneng Nuclear Power Development Company.
CNNC and Huaneng are also cooperating in phase I of the Changjiang plant (which comprises two CNP-600 pressurised water reactors), the Shidaowan HTR-PM project (a demonstration high-temperature gas-cooled reactor in Shandong province) and the 600 MWe demonstration fast reactor at Xiapu, Fujian province. For phase 1 of the Changjiang plant, CNNC has a 51% stake and Huaneng the remaining 49%. In July last year, CNNC announced the launch of a project to construct an ACP100 small modular reactor at the Changjiang site.
China Huaneng Group was formed from the State Power Corporation in 2002 as one of five major generators, and it has about 138 GWe in operation, none of it as yet nuclear. It has links with both CNNC and China General Nuclear and is the fourth Chinese central enterprise to obtain qualification for nuclear power development. CNNC’s Gu Jun said Changjiang phase 2 the is a new starting point for the comprehensive strategic cooperation between China National Nuclear Corporation and Changjiang Group.