Ukraine to export all extracted uranium to Canada
Photo via Energoatom

Ukraine’s state nuclear operator Energoatom on Tuesday finalised an agreement on exporting Ukrainian uranium concentrate to Canada, where it will be processed by Cameco, one of the largest global uranium suppliers.

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The agreement stipulates that all uranium produced by the Eastern mining and processing plant in central Ukraine will be exported to Canada for further conversion and supply of natural uranium hexafluoride for enrichment, Energoatom said in a statement.

Uranium hexafluoride is a chemical compound of uranium that is used in the production of fuel for nuclear reactors.

Energoatom president Petro Kotin called the agreement "a landmark event" for the Ukrainian nuclear industry.

"It guarantees its stability and, as a result, a stable supply of electricity to citizens," Mr Kotin was quoted as saying.

Back in March, Energoatom signed a multi-year contract with Cameco to supply uranium hexafluoride to make nuclear fuel for Ukrainian nuclear power plants.

According to the agreement, Cameco, a Canadian company, is to supply Ukraine with all necessary natural uranium hexafluoride in the years 2024 through 2035 for all four nuclear power plants, including in Zaporizhzhya after its de-occupation.

Cameco is the world's largest publicly traded uranium company, accounting for nine per cent of global uranium production by late 2021.

It already supplied uranium products to Ukrainian nuclear power plants in 2019 and 2021, and last year, it announced the acquisition of the American Westinghouse Electric, Ukraine's partner in the nuclear energy sector.

In recent years, Ukraine has been gradually converting its nuclear power units from Russian to American nuclear fuel produced by Westinghouse, which completed with Russia’s full-scale invasion in 2022.