Expansion of China's first home designed and built nuclear power station got underway on Friday.
A ceremony was held in Haiyan County of east China's Zhejiang Province to mark Qinshan Nuclear Power Station’s second phase success in passing state technical assessments and the commencement of the expansion project.
Top Chinese leaders, including Wu Bangguo, Chairman of the National People's Congress Standing Committee, Premier Wen Jiabao and Vice-President Zeng Qinghong, sent letters of congratulation.
The key to China's nuclear power development lay in raising its innovative capabilities and the training of high-tech management personnel, Wu said in his letter.
Wen Jiabao called on station staff to use their experience and redouble efforts to make a further contribution to China's nuclear power development.
Zeng Qinghong congratulated those involved for utilizing innovation in construction.
Addressing Friday's ceremony, Vice-Premier Zeng Peiyan, said China would continue to develop its second-generation nuclear power stations and promote construction of the next generation of plants. The country would gradually increase the level of nuclear power entering the electricity supply.
China plans to increase its nuclear power generating capacity to 40 million kw by 2020 with the aim of it accounting for 4 percent of the country's total installed capacity at that time. Currently less than 2 percent of electric power comes from nuclear facilities.
"Safety and quality should be placed above all in nuclear power station construction and operation," Zeng said. He urged those involved in the industry to build the strictest nuclear power safety systems in the world.
(Xinhua News Agency April 29, 2006)