IAEA Technical Cooperation

IAEA Board of Governors Meeting
June 6-10, 2011
Technical Cooperation Report for 2010
U.S. Statement

Ambassador Glyn Davies

Permanent U.S. Representative to the IAEA

June 6, 2011

Mr. Chairman,

My delegation thanks the Secretariat, and in particular Deputy Director General Aning and his team, for the preparation of the 2010 Technical Cooperation Report.

The United States continues to strongly support the Technical Cooperation Program and its strategy to promote tangible socio-economic impact in a cost-effective manner. Properly managed, the program advances the use of nuclear technologies in achieving major sustainable development priorities in recipient countries, while ensuring that nuclear safety, security, and safeguards are integral to the conduct of all Technical Cooperation projects. The United States encourages the Technical Cooperation Department to redouble efforts to implement the IAEA’s safety requirements and to support Member States in enhancing their national nuclear security measures.

The United States commends the Director General once again for selecting cancer as a key focus area for 2010. My delegation appreciates the progress made through the implementation of technical cooperation projects in this area that have improved human health, particularly in Africa, Asia, and the Pacific, and we will continue to support the agency’s efforts in the area of cancer control. We would also like to assure the Director General and Deputy Director General Aning of our support for their efforts to focus on nuclear applications for improving water resources during 2011.

The United States continues to provide financial support for the Technical Cooperation Program; my country remains the largest single contributor to the Fund, but we also provide significant extra-budgetary contributions and other support to the Technical Cooperation Program, most recently through our contributions to the IAEA Peaceful Uses Initiative.

Mr. Chairman,

Our commitment to the Peaceful Uses Initiative builds on our long-standing support for the IAEA’s mandate to provide Member States – particularly those in the developing world – with access to the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, which is a critical component of the nuclear nonproliferation regime. Japan announced its support for the Peaceful Uses Initiative last September at the General Conference, and, since then, commitments have also been made by Monaco, New Zealand, and South Korea. Support for the peaceful uses activities of the IAEA is shared by Member States of different sizes and different resources. Dozens of Member States have already benefitted from this increased support, and many more will do so in the coming years. We hope more contributors to the IAEA Peaceful Uses Initiative will step forward in the coming months, as we seek to expand availability and accelerate implementation of peaceful uses activities through achieving the goal expressed by President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton of raising an additional one hundred million dollars for peaceful uses by 2015.

Mr. Chairman,

Today the Secretariat has presented to us a new Technical Cooperation project entitled “Marine benchmark study on the possible impact of the Fukushima radioactive releases in the Asia-Pacific Region.” In the wake of the recent natural disasters in Japan leading to the Fukushima nuclear incident,

Member States in the region are understandably concerned for the safety of their marine environments. The IAEA has unique expertise to offer in helping them to assess how recent events in Japan may affect their food and water resources. We commend the Department of Technical Cooperation, in coordination with the Departments of Nuclear Sciences and Applications and Nuclear Safety and Security, for the quick work in assessing this need and developing a project to address these concerns. The United States fully supports this project and endorses Board of Governors approval for both the project and for the use of footnote-a/ funds to cover the cost of the project, to be implemented as resources become available.

While the Secretariat has demonstrated admirable flexibility and agility in assembling this project quickly to meet an urgent need, we recognize that existing funding sources for the Program cannot be mobilized to support this project in the immediate term, and that extra-budgetary resources are required. This urgent and unforeseeable need is precisely the kind of case to which the Peaceful Uses Initiative is able to respond. My delegation is pleased to announce that the United States will immediately make available $400,000 for this new regional, Fukushima-related project, to be drawn from our contribution to the Peaceful Uses Initiative. Our support for the PUI is in addition to our longstanding commitment to support the Technical Cooperation Fund. In addition to providing added resources, this new initiative allows flexibility in matching needs and resources that the Technical Cooperation Fund cannot. We hope this contribution will allow the project to move forward without delay, and that other contributors will join us by making additional funds available for its completion.

Mr. Chairman,

We appreciate the commitment demonstrated by the increasing number of Member States who pay their share of the Technical Cooperation Fund. We welcome the 87.9 percent rate of attainment reached at the end of 2010, and we hope that this number will continue to rise. We encourage those Member States that have not yet paid their pledges for 2010 or met their financial obligations to the Technical Cooperation Fund by paying their National Participation Costs to do so. At the same time, we would like to express appreciation to Member States that provide extra-budgetary contributions, significantly increasing available resources in 2010 despite the global financial situation.

Mr. Chairman,

My delegation applauds the Agency’s efforts in improving project management and efficiency, organizing 16 training workshops to help Member States use the Logical Framework Approach to strengthen project design capacity in preparation for the 2012-2013 Technical Cooperation program cycle. The tools shared in these workshops will improve transparency of Member State goals, strengthen project design, improve tracking of project outcomes, and improve the management of funds and measurement of project impact. Better management of the Technical Cooperation Program’s activities will yield a more effective and efficient program for all Member States.

The United States recognizes that national nuclear and other entities, including the National Liaison Officers, are important partners in the implementation of the Technical Cooperation Program in Member States for achieving national development goals. We would like to commend the Secretariat in coordinating Technical Cooperation activities with a team that involves National Liaison Officers and which resulted in signing 23 new Country Program Frameworks and five UN Development Assistance Frameworks in the year 2010. We encourage the Secretariat to put more efforts in working with Member States that have not yet signed these Frameworks.

With these comments, Mr. Chairman, my delegation takes note of the 2010 Technical Cooperation Annual Report.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.