The United Arab Emirates is taking part in the annual week-long 65th General Conference of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) at the organization’s headquarters in Vienna, Austria, WAM reports.
The UAE delegation, led by Ambassador Hamad Al Kaabi, UAE Permanent Representative to the IAEA, includes various national stakeholders in nuclear sector such as the UAE’s Federal Authority for Nuclear Regulation (FANR), and Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation (ENEC).
The General Conference is the highest policy-making body of the IAEA, which is composed of representatives of all Member States of the Agency. It meets annually, typically in September, to consider and approve the Agency’s program and budget and to decide on other matters brought before it by the Board of Governors, the Director-General and Member States.
Al Kaabi delivered a keynote speech to the Plenary Session of the General Conference that highlighted the strong relationship that binds the IAEA and the UAE.
He underscored the UAE’s robust partnership with the IAEA for its unwavering support over the past decade, assisting the country in developing a peaceful nuclear program that meets the highest standards in nuclear safety, security and non-proliferation.
Following receiving the operating licenses by FANR and under its ongoing regulatory oversight, Unit 1 of the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant started commercial operation in April 2021 and Unit 2 was started up in August 2021. This has constituted a historic milestone in the UAE’s long-term roadmap for sustainable, knowledge-based economic prosperity, benefiting many generations to come.
Meanwhile, senior leadership representing the UAE nuclear sector will host a side-event entitled “The Next Generation of Nuclear Energy Leaders: The UAE’s Success Story of Encouraging Youth in Nuclear sector” on Thursday, where they will shed light on the status of the UAE Nuclear Energy Program with emphasis on efforts to build Emirati nuclear capabilities, as youth empowerment and capacity building remain a key priority for the UAE.
UAE delegation will hold a number of bilateral meetings with international stakeholders and other member states to discuss cooperation opportunities and exchange views on various topics related to nuclear policy, regulatory and industry.
In addition, UAE delegation will take part in the Regulatory Cooperation Forum on the margin of the IAEA General Conference to highlight efforts into building national capacity in the nuclear sector and ensuring the sustainability of the nuclear energy program of the UAE.
The Forum promotes sharing of regulatory knowledge and experience through international cooperation to achieve a high level of nuclear safety that is consistent with the IAEA safety standards.
In October 2021, the UAE will host the IAEA’s ConvEx-3 exercise entitled “Barakah UAE”. More than 170 countries and international organizations are invited to participate in the largest nuclear emergency exercise to test international response to a simulated accident at the Barakah Nuclear Power Plant.
Since joining the IAEA in 1976, the UAE has been cooperating with the IAEA based on its national developmental priorities. The cooperation spans across different sectors such as training and capacity building, nuclear energy infrastructure development as well as the use of nuclear applications in healthcare, agriculture, environmental monitoring and others.