Our strategy is set within the context of a challenging market environment, which we expect to give way to strong long-term fundamentals driven by increasing populations and growing electricity demand. Nuclear energy is an option that can provide the power needed, not only reliably, but also safely and affordably, and in a way that avoids adding to the air pollution that plagues so many countries with developing economies.
We are a pure-play nuclear fuel supplier, focused on taking advantage of the long-term growth we see coming in our industry, while maintaining the ability to respond to market conditions as they evolve. Our strategy is to focus on our tier-one assets and profitably produce at a pace aligned with market signals in order to preserve the value of those assets and increase long-term shareholder value, and to do that with an emphasis on safety, people and the environment.
Due to the weak market conditions since 2011, we have undertaken a number of deliberate and disciplined actions: we have focused on preserving the value of our lowest cost assets, on maintaining a strong balance sheet, on protecting and extending the value of our contract portfolio and on efficiently managing the company in a low price environment.
We evaluate our strategy in the context of our market environment and continue to adjust our actions in accordance with our marketing framework. You can read more about our strategy in our 2018 Q4 MD&A.
Uranium production is central to our strategy, as it is the biggest value driver of the nuclear fuel cycle and our business. In accordance with market conditions, and to mitigate risk, we will evaluate the optimal mix of our production, inventory and purchases in order to satisfy our contractual commitments and in order to return the best value possible. We will not produce from our tier-one assets to sell into an oversupplied spot market. During a prolonged period of uncertainty, this means leaving our uranium in the ground. As conditions improve, we expect to meet rising demand with production from our best margin operations.
Our fuel services division is a source of profit and supports our uranium segment while allowing us to vertically integrate across the fuel cycle. Our focus is on maintaining and optimizing profitability.
We continue to explore opportunities in the second largest value driver of the fuel cycle. Having operational control of both uranium production and enrichment facilities would offer synergies that could enhance profit margins.
Our global marketing activities are consolidated as Cameco Marketing Inc. based out of Saskatoon.
Reserves and Resources
We hold about 467 million pounds of proven and probable reserves on three continents.
Supply & Demand
Long-term outlook for the uranium industry remains positive, despite current market uncertainty.
Caution about Forward-Looking Information
Please click here for additional information about the assumptions applied in making the forward-looking statements on this page and the factors that could cause results to differ materially.