Uranium is in high demand, as it is used as fuel in nuclear power plants around the world. Statista’s Dyfed Loesche notes that according to the German Institute for Geosciences and Natural Resources BGR, Kazakhstan is the biggest producer of the radioactive metal. The central Asian country produced around 24,600 metric tons of the substance in 2016. This is a share of close to 40 percent of the worldwide production.
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Australia comes in at third place with 6,300 metric tons. However, in terms of total resources Australia has the most. Around 1.1 million tons are slumbering in its earths, of which not all can currently be excavated at reasonable costs.
Around the world there are known resources of some 3.5 million tons, so there is no foreseeable shortage.
Until now, the United States is still the biggest consumer of uranium, consuming 18,200 metric tons in 2016 compared to 5,300 tons in China.
However, China’s need for uranium is likely to increase in the future, as of the 61 reactors that are being built in 15 countries worldwide, 21 are located in the People’s Republic. In Namibia, in southeast Africa, the Chinese run Husab pit took up production in 2016, which could become the world’s single biggest uranium production facilities.