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Secrecy surrounds China's newly discovered uranium deposits

China has flagged up the discovery of world-class uranium deposits in Inner Mongoia, but officials refuse to discuss the details.

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Open-pit uranium mining in Wyoming, United States. (Image by SkyTruth)

Earlier this month, China announced that its biggest sandstone uranium deposit had been discovered in the Autonomous Region of Inner Mongolia. It was reported that the amount of resources in this region could make China among the world's top uranium producers.

However, upon further investigation chinadialogue has found a surprising level of secrecy surrounding the discoveries.

Uranium is a fundamental, raw material for the nuclear industry and as such, the discovery of the new deposits must have been a warmly welcomed announcement. Yet, there have been no details from the government. No data about the size of this deposit, its place in the world ranking, or the amount of raw material which is might be possible to extract from it.

China National Nuclear Corporation (CNNC) is one of the four prospective extractors of the uranium. chinadialogue contacted a manager of the Beijing Research Institute of Uranium Geology, who is also affiliated with CNNC, but there has been no reply. Another specialist refused to answer our questions, saying that the issues is “sensitive”, implying that it would be inconvenient for him to make statements about it.

The national television network CCTV had broadcast a news item about the uranium mine, but our journalist noticed that the part of the video broadcast which had covered the deposit of uranium has since been removed from their website.


Translated and edited by chinadialogue volunteers Giulia Gortani and Hope Louton respectively.

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