URÁN – investičné možnosti a riziká

Pri investovaní do uránu sa odporúča brať do úvahy nasledovné možnosti a riziká:


Uranium Opportunities and Risks in Uranium investment

Opportunities

  • Persistent deficit - A study by the IAEA (International Atomic Energy Agency) shows a significant deficit in production vs. reactor requirements through the year 2020.
  • New plant construction - China and India are leading in the construction of new nuclear power plants and these plants will require fuel. More nuclear installations will be built within the next decade than decommissioned.
  • Mine development cycle- New mines can take as much as a decade to become operational, delaying the potential for new mine supply to ease the deficit. (Note that the construction cycle for power plants is similar in duration.)
  • Global warming initiatives - Nuclear power does not generate greenhouse gases. Should major energy consuming countries adopt aggressive global warming initiatives, nuclear power would be an obvious beneficiary.
  • New mining opportunities - Persistently high uranium prices will open up new mining and extraction opportunities for investors.
  • Investor participation - Although energy and natural resource investors have bought heavily into uranium, it is still not widely held by the broad investment community. There is still a lot of room for expansion.
Risks
  • Technological risk - New technologies such as the Integral Fast Reactor could turn the uranium supply/demand equation upside down. The construction of high-efficiency breeder or CANDU reactors could create a permanent supply surplus.
  • Disaster risk - There is always the potential for another Chernobyl or Three Mile Island disaster that will create new political resistance to nuclear power.
  • Nuclear proliferation - many rouge states are actively building nuclear weapons. Should a nuclear weapon be used in an aggressive act, resistance to nuclear power may dramatically increase.
  • Nuclear disarmament - Although the possibility now seems remote, a new global nuclear disarmament effort would bring millions of pounds of bomb-grade HEU into the market as the result of weapons dismantling. This has happened one before in recent history resulting in a uranium price crash, so I wouldn't count it out. Geopolitics can change quickly.
  • Plant operational changes - The nuclear power industry may react to potential fuel shortages or high fuel prices by using higher enrichment levels, making fuel use much more efficient and as a result reducing or eliminating the supply deficit.
  • Reprocessing - The US and other countries may elect to reprocess spent fuel, creating additional supply.
  • Alternative fuels - Thorium has been investigated for a long time as a possible nuclear fuel. Its advantages include abundance and immunity from nuclear proliferation dangers. It cannot be used in light water reactors but CANDU and Breeder designs can accommodate thorium fuels. Both China and India have shown interest in thorium fuel cycles for their new CANDU and breeder reactor projects. Plutonium is also an alternative fuel and is usually mixed with uranium in MOX fuels which can be used in traditional reactors but have the disadvantage of nuclear proliferation danger.
  • Investor sentiment - Investors have bought heavily into the future of uranium. Should any disappointment befall the market, sellers could swamp the small uranium investment sector.

Source: SafeH

10.02.2007

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