IAEA Board of Governors Meeting, Agenda Item 3: Strengthening the Agency’s Technical Cooperation Activities: Technical Cooperation Report for 2021
U.S. statement as delivered by Political Officer Rachael Parrish
Vienna, Austria, June 6, 2022
The United States thanks the Secretariat for preparing the Technical Cooperation Report for 2021, and we wish to congratulate the Agency on its great success in carrying out the mission of the Technical Cooperation (TC) Program in view of the ongoing pandemic. We note the successful conclusion of 18 new Country Program Frameworks (CPFs) in 2021. CPFs provide critical support for results-based management by linking Agency projects to national development objectives of Member States and advancing the sustainability of TC activities.
The United States views our contributions to the Agency’s TC activities, both financial and in-kind, as one of the ways that we fulfill our commitments under Article IV of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). Another effort to fulfill the promise of Article IV and to enhance support for the IAEA’s peaceful uses work is underway in the context of the upcoming NPT Review Conference. We note the working paper on “Creating a Sustained Dialogue on Peaceful Uses” on the website for the NPT (Working Paper #46) and welcome other countries to associate with the effort through co-sponsorship of this paper.
The United States remains the leading contributor to the IAEA’s TC Fund and continues our support to the Agency through the Peaceful Uses Initiative (PUI). Since the PUI was founded in 2010, we have provided voluntary, extra-budgetary contributions totaling more than $530 million to promote peaceful nuclear activities through the Agency. This includes over $270 million to the Technical Cooperation Fund (TCF) and over $132 million through the PUI. U.S. extra-budgetary funding has supported over 80 IAEA Member States through the TC Program. We are pleased to note the high rate of attainment for the TCF in 2021 and commend all Member States that provided additional extra-budgetary resources in support of technical cooperation activities. We encourage new contributions to voluntary funding mechanisms such as the PUI that enable the IAEA to implement projects in areas that the TCF will not stretch to cover. We continue to urge all Member States in a financial position to do so to self-finance any participation in the TC Program, enabling the Agency to use more of its funding to address the needs of low- and middle-income countries.
This year’s TC Report calls attention to Agency efforts to strengthen partnerships with other international organizations and initiatives to promote the use of nuclear science and technology as part of the solution to large-scale global challenges and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals. We fully support the Agency in its efforts to engage with other international institutions. For example, we recognize the Agency’s work to promote nuclear energy, science, and technology to address climate change issues at the Climate Adaptation Summit and the 2021 UN Climate Change Conference. We also welcome new partnerships with the Global Plastic Action Partnership and the World Meteorological Organization in support of the IAEA’s new project, “Nuclear Technologies for Controlling Plastic Pollution.”
We also welcome the continuation of partnerships initiated or strengthened during the COVID pandemic, including collaborative work as part of the UN Crisis Management Team, in providing critical COVID assistance to Member States. We note the positive feedback from the Agency’s survey on IAEA-provided COVID assistance included in the TC Report. We encourage continued work with relevant international organizations to further develop Member States’ capacities to detect future outbreaks by applying the One Health approach.
The TC Report emphasizes the strong success of partnerships with international institutions to support the Agency’s role in combating cancer under the Program of Action for Cancer Therapy (PACT). In this area, we welcome the Director General’s new flagship initiative, Rays of Hope, and underscore its focus on expanding access to areas that completely lack radiotherapy treatment facilities for cancer patients. The United States applauds the IAEA for its efforts to bridge the gap in access to cancer care with Rays of Hope, starting with an initial group of countries in Africa. We encourage the IAEA to coordinate with other international organizations that also seek to improve access to cancer care to best support Member States and ultimately save lives.
The United States appreciates Agency efforts to encourage greater participation of women in all activities under the TCP. We emphasize the need to continue to develop appropriate metrics to demonstrate progress in delivering the TCP in this area and throughout the TC Program, and we stand ready to assist the Agency in this area.
With these comments, we join consensus in taking note of the TC Report for 2021 and request that it be transmitted to the General Conference.
Thank you, Chair.