Amidst heightened geopolitical competition and low-carbon energy transformations, several states, notably China and countries in the Global South, have decided to invest in nuclear power, seeing it as a secure and low-emission alternative to fossil fuels.
Kazakhstan is the world’s largest producer and exporter of unenriched uranium. It has been a reliable supplier to the West for decades, but its nuclear sector is closely linked to Russia’s, which has caused some concern in the European Union and the United States.
Russia is a major player in the field thanks to its global exports of enriched uranium and nuclear technology. Its state nuclear company Rosatom has a large portfolio of international customers and numerous projects, mainly outside the West. Russia’s nuclear sector has become an important aspect of its energy diplomacy.
While the nuclear sector has not been sanctioned, geopolitical tensions and instability in uranium-producing countries have increased security of supply risks for the West, which relies heavily on imports of both uranium and nuclear fuel.