September 24, 2009 (1:20 p.m. EDT)
No. 272

Minister Day Announces Conclusion of Negotiations with Kazakhstan on Nuclear Cooperation Agreement

The Honourable Stockwell Day, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, today announced that Canada has concluded negotiations on the text of a nuclear cooperation agreement with Kazakhstan. In taking this significant step in Canadian-Kazakh relations, Minister Day was joined by Kazakhstan’s Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources, Sauat Mynbaev.

“This agreement will open up the civil nuclear market to Canadian companies, who have a full array of products and services to offer Kazakhstan’s growing market for nuclear energy,” said Minister Day. “Given its expertise in nuclear energy, Canada will continue to play a growing role in this energy-rich country, especially in oil and gas and uranium extraction, as well as in the supply and service of pipeline equipment.”

A nuclear cooperation agreement will ensure that all nuclear material, equipment and technology transferred by Canada will be used only for peaceful, non-explosive purposes. The Government of Canada and the Government of Kazakhstan will now work to finalize the legal text prior to signature and implementation.

One of the companies that will benefit from a nuclear cooperation agreement is Canada’s Cameco Corporation, among the world’s largest uranium producers.

 

“Since 1993, Cameco Corporation has been successfully engaged in developing our uranium operations in Kazakhstan, where we are 60-percent owner of Joint Venture Inkai,” said Gerald W. Grandey, Cameco’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “Once implemented, this agreement will allow us to expand our role and presence in the country and develop partnerships that will allow Cameco and Kazatomprom to work together on opportunities to convert uranium.”

Canada currently holds about 10 percent of the world’s nuclear-reactor market. Canada’s nuclear-energy industry is worth approximately $6.6 billion in annual revenues, employs 31,000 people in 150 firms, and exports about $1.2 billion worth of products and services each year.

More details about Minister Day’s trip to Kazakhstan can be found at Minister Day visits Ukraine, Kazakhstan and India.

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For further information, and to obtain high-resolution photographs, media representatives may contact:

Mélisa Leclerc
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway
613-992-6186

Trade Media Relations Office
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
613-996-2000