Speaking at a press conference in Hanoi on January 9, the IAEA leader stated Vietnam is a very important partner of the agency, which is evidenced by its Chairmanship of the IAEA’s Board of Governors — the most significant policy-making body of the agency — in the 2013-2014 tenure.
Yukiya Amano said his visit to Vietnam, from January 7-11, sought to boost cooperative ties with Vietnam in stepping up the application of nuclear energy in general and Vietnam’s nuclear power programme in particular.
The two sides evaluated the outcomes and impacts of the IAEA-supported projects in Vietnam, he added.
Measures for future collaboration were deliberated, he said, mentioning Vietnam’s rich potential for cooperation with the IAEA, citing the launch of the Ninh Thuan nuclear power project as an example.
He also referred to the application of radioactive substances in the treatment of cancers and the use of nuclear energy in irrigation and water management and insect extermination for crops.
According to Yukiya Amano, developed and developing countries equally have the right to access nuclear power, and Vietnam is among several nations which want to develop this type of energy.
The IAEA is willing to support every country in developing its nuclear power in a safe and sustainable manner, he pledged.
Vietnam has consulted the IAEA since it adopted an initiative to develop nuclear power, he said, noting that the country has made progress in this sector by participating in international conventions, carrying out personnel training and building feasible reports.
However, the country still has a lot to do as a nuclear power project requires time and complicated procedures, he continued.
The IAEA has, accordingly, dispatched its leading experts on nuclear power to the country and will maintain the activity annually, Yukiya Amano stressed.
Besides, the agency is also providing technical support in the 2012-2013 period through several projects worth about 1 million EUR (1.3 million USD), focusing on the development of nuclear power infrastructure.
In term of nuclear power application, the agency has helped Vietnam upgrade laboratories at the Institute for Nuclear Science and Technology and use nuclear power in agricultural development, he said.
Vietnam needs to develop nuclear power in a safe and sustainable manner for decades-long usage, the IAEA official concluded.-VNA