This is a best prospect industry sector for this country. Includes a market overview and trade data.
Last Published: 8/10/2017

Approximately one percent of Brazil’s energy is supplied by two pressurized water nuclear reactors at the Angra dos Reis nuclear power plant (NPP) near Rio de Janeiro. The Angra 1 & 2 have 626 MWe (Meter Water equivalent) and 1270 MWe generating capacity, respectively. A third 1270 MWe reactor, Angra 3, is under construction, but its completion date has not yet been determined. The Angra 3 project, which started construction in 1970s and was suspended in 1986 due to budgetary issues, was resumed in 2010 after France’s Areva signed a deal with Brazil’s state-owned utility Eletronuclear, to take over the project. Eletronuclear (ETN), a subsidiary of Eletrobras, is responsible for building and operating NPPs in Brazil.

In 2015, former Brazilian Minister of Mines and Energy (MME) Eduardo Braga confirmed Brazil’s plans for nuclear expansion: four new plants by 2030 and eight additional plants by 2050, which would bring Brazil’s fleet to a total of 15 units. However, the new MME Minister Fernando Coelho took office in May 2016, and while he seems supportive of additional nuclear power as a base load solution for Brazil’s power matrix, no concrete actions have taken place in this direction. For example, Brazil’s Long-Term Energy Plan (PNE 2050) has not yet been concluded, and although industry contacts expect new nuclear plants to be part of the study, as of May 2017, it has not been completed.

Additionally, the GOB and the Brazilian Congress will have to revise the business model, including the possibility of public-private partnerships (PPPs); how nuclear energy would be traded in the current purchasing power pool model; and what the criteria will be regarding technology qualification and selection for new nuclear power plants. Also, the Brazilian Nuclear Development Association has submitted a constitutional amendment proposal (PEC) calling for a more simplified approval process of future nuclear power plants. Currently, the Brazilian Congress has to approve each individual nuclear power plant before it is submitted to the Nuclear Power Regulatory Commission (CNEN).

There is a proposal waiting to be reviewed at Congress to split CNEN into two entities to create a separate regulatory agency. CNEN currently plays the joint role of regulator and promoter. It is independent of nuclear power plant operations. CNEN has the authority to pass regulations, approve licenses, inspect nuclear installations, and to enforce its policies.
Industry contacts hope that the GOB and Congress will choose a business model for future nuclear procurement that promotes transparency and private sector participation. Requiring high equity investment and risk assumption will most likely preclude strong competition since only state owned enterprises would usually compete under such terms.
The following 2015 and 2016 statistics relate to selected U.S. civil nuclear equipment exports to Brazil:

U.S. Civil Nuclear Brazil

U.S. civil nuclear equipment exports to Brazil


2015 (US$)

2016 (US$)




Source: The Office of Trade and Economic Analysis (OTEA), Industry and Analysis of ITA/U.S. Department of Commerce

Leading Sub-Sectors

  • Safety and other plant upgrades
  • Works related to the extension of Angra one operation license for additional 20 years
  • Plant design modifications
  • Modernization of instrumentation and controls
  • Upgrade of radioactive waste handling systems, including a new spent fuel dry storage facility (**)
  • Moderate opportunities to supply components to existing plants, one of which was built by Westinghouse, with engineering support, fuel components and related materials.
  • Licensing support services to Brazil’s nuclear regulator, the National Nuclear Energy Commission (CNEN). CNEN’s Directorate of Radiation Protection and Safety is responsible for licensing and supervising all nuclear facilities. 

ETN recently indicated that it will invest about US$5.04 billion from 2017 to 2021, as shown in the table below:  
In US$ Thousands (direct investments):

Nuclear Power Direct Investments Brazil

Nuclear Power - Direct Investments







Operations & Maintenance, power plant expansion & Spent Fuel Dry Storage Facility (UAS)






New nuclear power plants






Corporate Management Projects (IT)






Expansion Project- Angra III plant (*)












Source: ETN - Exchange rate: 3.1
* Investments for the conclusion of Angra III nuclear power plant will depend on the availability of financial sources and approval by Brazil’s National Energy Policy Council.
** The international tender for the Spent Fuel Dry Storage System took place in early 2017. At the writing of this report, ETN had not yet announced the winning bidder.

Foreign suppliers do not need to pre-register at ETN’s suppliers registration website to participate in international tenders. Suppliers can check ETN’s website for tender announcements.
However, if a foreign supplier has a Brazilian distributor, dealer or legal representative, which is advisable, they will register on behalf of the foreign supplier, and will be considered a local domestic company. In this case, they will be paid in Brazilian Real currency when they win a tender. Information on how to register with ETN on their website.

ETN does not procure equipment, goods or services through e-Commerce. However, they use “Comprasnet”, which is a federal government electronic procurement portal where suppliers can also learn about tenders, and submit specific types of bids to all federal government companies, like ETN.

Web Resources

Local Trade Events:
International Nuclear Atlantic Conference (INAC)
October 22-27, 2017
Dayrell Hotel & Convention Center, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil
SIEN 2017.  8º International Seminar on Nuclear Energy 
July 12-14, 2017
Bolsa do Rio Convention Center
Address: Praça XV, 20. Centro, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Trade Events in the U.S.:
Power-Gen International (this show includes a nuclear power pavilion)
December 5- 7, 2017
Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas, NV

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Brazil Energy Trade Development and Promotion