China is to resume construction of new nuclear power stations, suspended since the Fukushima disaster in Japan in March 2011, China Daily reported on Thursday.

But only a small number will be launched by 2015 and all of them will be located at coastal sites, it said.

Prior to the Fukushima disaster, some officials indicated China would embark on as many as 40 nuclear energy projects during 2011-15 and that at least seven inland provinces applied to host plants.

In contrast, according to a statement released on the government website Wednesday, China would resume construction of nuclear power plants “in a steady and orderly way” and “at a reasonable pace”.

Two programmes -- the national plan for nuclear power security (2011-20) and nuclear power development (2011-20) -- were approved on Wednesday at a meeting of the State Council chaired by Premier Wen Jiabao.

A national energy development programme up to 2015 was also approved.

All new nuclear reactors must comply with the highest international safety standards, according to the plans, the daily said.

China’s nuclear power generating capacity accounts for just 1.8 per cent of its electricity, lower than the average 14 percent for countries that have nuclear power.

More In: International | News