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Exports & Trade

U.S. companies are exporting plants, equipment and services to countries around the world.

Commercial Nuclear Exports Mean Thousands of U.S. Jobs

Worldwide, 72 new nuclear energy facilities are under construction, and more than 170 are in the licensing and advanced planning stages. The demand for high-quality commodities, components and services provides an export opportunity for U.S. manufacturers.

The U.S. Department of Commerce estimates that the international market for equipment and services at $500 billion to $740 billion over the next 10 years, and that every $1 billion of exports by U.S. companies supports 5,000 to 10,000 domestic jobs.

Key markets will not be slowed by events in Japan. Leaders in China, India and other countries where future growth is concentrated have already indicated they will go forward.

Global Growth Opportunity

Construction of nuclear plants creates a range of
export opportunities. Depending on the design,
a single new reactor requires approximately:

  • 500 to 3,000 nuclear grade valves

  • 125 to 250 pumps

  • 44 miles of piping

  • 300 miles of electric wiring

  • 90,000 electrical components.

The economic benefits of nuclear trade are substantial—but the opportunities it provides to strengthen the nonproliferation regime and enhance international nuclear safety practices are just as compelling.


The Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank)  is one of the country's most important tools to increase exports and create jobs. Ex-Im Bank provides financing or guarantees for billions in U.S. exports, which support thousands of U.S. jobs. Ex-Im also reduces the federal deficit by hundreds of millions of dollars. The U.S. nuclear industry supports the reauthorization of Ex-Im Bank's charter, which expires September 30.

Although some functions performed by various agencies of the U.S. government may be instrumental for U.S. commercial nuclear exports, other functions are often poorly coordinated (and often at cross purposes) with each other and with U.S. industry. Ineffective U.S. government coordination hurts U.S. exporters, who are private companies that vary in size and structure from small consulting and manufacturing firms to large investor-owned corporations.

Many nations that are developing new nuclear programs do not have bilateral agreements for nuclear energy cooperation and trade required by the Atomic Energy Act. Without these so-called 123 agreements in place, markets in these countries are closed to American suppliers.

The Department of Energy’s Part 810 regulations, governing the export of peaceful nuclear energy technology, are long overdue for modernization. The rule lacks transparency, predictability and efficiency, and impedes our manufacturing and technology sectors from increasing exports and jobs.

From the earliest stages of development, the successful construction of new plants depends on a robust supply chain to support nuclear manufacturing.  Nuclear plants are comprised of hundreds of components and subcomponents, whose construction will require a deep and diverse supplier base.