‘Govt’s nuclear build programme misunderstood by public’

Necsa chair Kelvin Kemm says South Africa is already a world leader in the development of nuclear materials.

FILE: Nuclear physicist and CEO of Nuclear Africa Dr Kelvin Kemm. Picture: EWN.

JOHANNESBURG - Chairperson of the Nuclear Energy Corporation of South Africa (Necsa) Kelvin Kemm says government’s nuclear build programme has been misunderstood by the public.

Necsa is briefing Parliaments Energy Committee on its annual report on Tuesday.

Kemm says expanding the nuclear programme will be beneficial for the country.

The nuclear physicist and Necsa chair says South Africa is already a world leader in the development of nuclear materials and is already manufacturing systems that are being exported to Russia and Korea.

“We’ve had a number of approaches from people to build South African pebble bed nuclear reactors in a number of African countries which are ideally suited to that.”

But chief executive Phumzile Tshelane says the corporation is facing financial constraints to build capacity.

“If we link up and cooperate better, we will achieve our goals much easier.”

More than 40 South Africans are being trained in China in preparation for the expansion of government’s nuclear programme.