The Chinese government fired the head of its nuclear power program after launching an investigation into allegations of corruption, state media said.
No reason was given for the dismissal of Kang Rixin, the general manager of China National Nuclear Corporation. He was under investigation for "grave violations of discipline," a standard party term referring to graft and abuse of power, the official Xinhua News Agency said late Friday.
The Organization Department of the Communist Party appointed Sun Qin, 56, deputy director of the National Energy Administration, in Kang's place, it said.
The Communist Party's Central Committee announced earlier this month that Kang was being investigated. He had been head of the company since September 2003.
China is building more nuclear reactors than any other country. Beijing sees nuclear power as a clean alternative to coal-powered plants that account for 80 per cent of China's electricity supply. Plans announced in recent years call for nuclear stations to supply 4 per cent of China's power needs by 2020, up from about 2 per cent currently.
China National Nuclear Corporation performs research and development as well as construction in areas such as nuclear electricity production, nuclear fuels and nuclear technology application, according to its Web site.