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Asia airs nuclear ambitions at U.N. gathering via Reuters

(Reuters) – China, India and other Asian states used a United Nations nuclear agency meeting this week to signal their determination to expand the use of atomic energy.

At the September 16-20 annual gathering of the IAEA’s 159 member states, China outlined plans for more nuclear power plants despite safety worries around the world in the aftermath of Japan’s Fukushima disaster.

“The Chinese government has never wavered its firm determination to support nuclear energy development,” Ma Xingrui, chairman of China’s Atomic Energy Authority, said.

With 17 nuclear power units now operating on the Chinese mainland, Beijing has another 28 under construction, the largest number in the world, he told the IAEA conference.

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has cut its long-term outlook for nuclear energy growth for a third year in a row, in part because of hesitancy following Japan’s crisis. But, it said, the industry could still nearly double its capacity by 2030 due to growth in Asia.

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