CALGARY - Federal Natural Resources Minister Christian Paradis says he wants a deal to sell off Atomic Energy of Canada Ltd. completed "sooner rather than later."

Ottawa announced 18 months ago that it was putting AECL's Candu nuclear reactor business up for sale.

Paradis told reporters in Calgary that AECL, the way it is right now, is "unsustainable" and that it is being restructured to diminish the burden on the Canadian taxpayer.

The minister said "everything is still on the table" and it is possible that the federal government could sell off 100 per cent of the company.

Paradis wouldn't confirm whether SNC-Lavalin Group and Ontario's Bruce Power are the only bidders.

He says the offers are being studied and that, in the meantime, the restructuring at AECL will continue.