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Market Competition in the Nuclear Industry

image of Market Competition in the Nuclear Industry

Nuclear power plants require a wide variety of specialised equipment, materials and services for their construction, operation and fuelling. There has been much consolidation and retrenchment in the nuclear industry since the 1980s, with the emergence of some large global nuclear companies. Electricity market liberalisation in many OECD countries has meanwhile placed nuclear plant operators under increased competitive pressure.

These structural changes in both the producer and consumer sides of the nuclear industry have had implications for the level of competition in the nuclear engineering and fuel cycle markets. With renewed expansion of nuclear power now anticipated, this study examines competition in the major nuclear industry sectors at present, and how this may change with a significant upturn in demand.

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Competition in the front-end of the nuclear fuel cycle

Nuclear Energy Agency

The front-end of the nuclear fuel cycle includes all the activities which precede the loading of fuel elements into the core of the nuclear power plant. These activities are divided into several discrete steps, each of which is carried out on a separate site and usually by different companies. Thus, each step forms a distinct market sector.

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