Hong Kong’s stock market authorities have been urged to ensure that a publicly listed company releases all information related to the construction of a nuclear power plant near Hong Kong, amid reports about safety problems with the reactors being used. The twin-reactor plant is being built in Taishan, which is 130km west of Hong Kong. Hong Kong experts flag fresh concern over Guangdong nuclear plant after serious flaws found in similar French facility The call came from the Professional Commons, which also urged the project’s controlling shareholder, Hong Kong-listed CGN Power, a subsidiary of China Guangdong Nuclear Power Group, to explain whether it would follow up on the potential problems flagged by France’s Nuclear Safety Authority last year. The French authorities last April discovered excessive carbon in the pressure vessel of an EPR plant in Flamanville, France, indicating that the vessel was too brittle and could potentially cause a radioactive leak. The project – like the one at Taishan – uses third-generation European Pressurised Reactor (EPR) technology – the most advanced in existence – supplied by French state-controlled company Areva. Areva admitted that it improperly tested some 400 nuclear plant components in the past 51 years, including altering or omitting test results. The company only confirmed that 50 such components had been used in France, without detailing the location of the other parts. Systems integration and performance testing of the third-generation units has yet to be completed, so no EPR plants have yet come on stream. CGN Power says Taishan nuclear reactors pose no safety risks Professional Commons member and accountancy sector lawmaker Kenneth Leung said Hong Kong laws stipulated that all companies listed in the city had to make public all information that could affect their stock price. He said Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing and the Securities and Futures Commission should ensure that CGN Power releases all such information, including details about reactor construction and safety tests. Leung said he was told by the government that the Taishan plant would only establish a risk information system with the Hong Kong authorities after the reactors were activated, probably next year, so the government had very little to go on at this stage. “Citizens need to know what’s happening,” said Leung. “The Taishan reactors are funded by a Hong Kong-listed company that raised capital in Hong Kong, so we need to express our concerns through different channels.” After brief pause, China rushes to build more nuclear power plants Gao Ligang, chief executive officer at CGN Power, which holds a 51 per cent stake in the project, said earlier that the two reactors at Taishan met all international technology and safety standards. He said the reactors were expected to start operating in the first and second half of next year respectively. At least seven French engineers based at the EPR plant in France told investigative news agency FactWire that Unit 1 of the Taishan plant had already undergone a large number of tests and the earliest it could go into service would be 2018. However, they said the mainland authorities had been pushing hard to “speed up” construction so it could go online in 2017 as originally scheduled, becoming the world’s first power plant to use third-generation nuclear technology. Gao denied he was facing any pressure from the mainland authorities.