Advertisement

Cameco multi-billion-dollar deal announced after Q4 results show loss

Click to play video: 'Bright future for nuclear energy production in Saskatchewan: Cameco president'
Bright future for nuclear energy production in Saskatchewan: Cameco president
Uranium production in Saskatchewan is about to see a boost. The Q4 2022 results for Cameco showed a loss, but revenue climbed more than 10 per cent compared with a year earlier. - Easton Hamm. – Feb 9, 2023

Uranium production in Saskatchewan is about to see a boost.

Tim Gitzel, president and CEO of Cameco, said the company has signed a multi-billion-dollar contract with Ukraine to be its sole supplier for 12 years.

The Q4 2022 results for Cameco showed a loss, but revenue climbed more than 10 per cent compared with a year earlier, which Gitzel said showed that it is on the path to recovery.

“We’ve seen a real renewal of interest in nuclear power,” Gitzel said.

He said decarbonization, electrification and the race to net zero have worked in their favour.

Story continues below advertisement

Gitzel said the invasion of Ukraine has pushed countries to start looking for an alternative source of uranium.

He added that the state-owned nuclear utility in Ukraine, Energoatom, signed a partnership with Cameco, giving them all of their business for the next 12 years.

“That allows us to boost our production here in Saskatchewan.”

Gitzel added that the McArthur River/Key Lake uranium operations started back up in February 2022, but not at full speed. He said they now have a reason to run at full speed.

Breaking news from Canada and around the world sent to your email, as it happens.

“The future looks really, really good for Cameco, for our employees and for Saskatchewan.”

He said nuclear energy represents about two-thirds of Ukraine’s power, noting that they’ll need to keep those plants operational.

Gitzel said he wants to stand shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine and support them.

“We’re there for them. We’ll supply what they need.”

Story continues below advertisement

He said the exact number for the contract was confidential, but emphasized that this was a multi-billion-dollar contract.

He said many European countries depended on Russia for power, noting that Ukraine isn’t the only country Cameco is in talks with.

Gitzel said they have somewhere between 40 and 70 positions open within the company and including contractors, adding that they’ll be hiring going forward.

Jason Aebig with the Saskatoon Chamber of Commerce said any time a Saskatoon flagship company can announce a long-term agreement, it’s good news for the workers and economy.

He said the McArthur River/Key Lake operations employ more than 700 people, adding that there are many Saskatoon-based jobs that are tied to those operations.

“Long-term contracts like these provide job security for hundreds of workers and their families, whether they’re in central Saskatchewan or in the north,” Aebig said.

Aebig added that about 70 to 80 per cent of goods and services used by Cameco at the northern site are procured through northern or Indigenous businesses.

“It’s great news for local suppliers.”

Story continues below advertisement

He said these deals also put the province and these companies on the map.

Aebig said Saskatchewan has companies that are involved in manufacturing or mining resources that the world desperately needs, adding that they are starting to get recognized.

Sponsored content

AdChoices