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United States, China agree on reactor sale

Dec. 18, 2006 at 9:56 AM

HONG KONG, Dec. 18 (UPI) -- The United States has given its OK for China to buy four Westinghouse nuclear reactors, it was reported Monday.

While no sale price was given, The New York Times said outside analysts place value as high as $8 billion.

U.S. Energy Secretary Samuel Bodman and Ma Kai, China's National Development and Reform Commission minister, signed a memo of understanding for the reactors in Beijing on Saturday.

Under the plan, state-owned China National Nuclear Corporation would buy the reactors from Westinghouse Electric, now owned by Tokyo's Toshiba.

There was some concern voiced over the deal. Michael R. Wessel, a commissioner of the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, said such deals limit long-term benefits to the United States while clearly helping China.