Statement of the G-77 and China at the IAEA Board of Governors, 9-12 September 2002 delivered by H.E. Ambassador Victor G. Garcia III, Permanent Representative of the Philippines

Agenda item 3: Measures to strengthen international co-operation in nuclear, radiation, transport and waste safety (GOV/2002/35 and GOV/2002/36)

Mr. Chairman,
The Group of 77 and China wishes to thank the Secretariat for the elaboration of documents GOV/2002/35 and GOV/2002/36 under this agenda item.
2. With respect to document GOV/2002/35, the Group of 77 and China acknowledges the important work carried out by the Agency in response to safety-related Board decisions and General Conference resolutions.
3. Concerning the measures implemented to strengthen international co-operation in transport safety, the Group of 77 and China would like to reiterate the remarks made during the June meeting of the Board that, in 2001, there were important developments in this field that reflect more accurately the actual work carried out by the Agency to address in a comprehensive way all issues related to transport safety. Hence, the Group strongly believes that the activities described in GOV/2002/35, attachment 4, deserve to be incorporated in the Agency's Annual Report 2001, which, in its present form, merely highlights the conclusions of a CRP report that was officially finished in 1998 and does not involve major work by the IAEA in 2001 nor commits the Agency to its conclusions.
Mr. Chairman,
4. In what concerns document GOV/2002/36, the Group of 77 and China welcomes the formulation of the International Action Plan for the Radiological Protection of Patients, due to its significant guidance to all Member States toward the minimization of risk for patients under radiation exposure, following the recommendations of the International Conference held in Malaga in 2001. A great effort on education and training is noticeable, for which the Agency's long-term support will be of tremendous importance.
5. This notwithstanding, in view of the complex measures that some countries may have to undertake in order to implement this Action Plan, the Group believes that it would be highly desirable to devise a transition plan, taking into account specific situations in relation to the available means, resources, educational and regulatory framework in Member States. Further more, the Group believes that some improvement in the co-ordination between the Agency's Technical Co-operation Department and other technical departments will be necessary, in order to optimize their assistance delivery to Member States.
6. With these comments, Mr. Chairman, the Group of 77 and China takes note of document GOV/2002/35 and approves, in principle, document GOV/2002/36. Thank you.

Agenda item 4: Strengthening the Agency's Activities related to Nuclear Science, Technology and Applications (GOV/2002/39)

Mr. Chairman,
The Group of 77 and China wishes to thank the Secretariat for the elaboration of document GOV/2002/39, which contains a report on the Agency's activities in 4 areas of great importance for developing Member States.
2. The Group appreciates the steps taken by the Agency to address one of the important issues being faced by the developing countries, i.e., managing nuclear knowledge. The problems associated with the diminishing of nuclear knowledge and of relevant manpower have been voiced in various Agency fora for quite some time now. The Group appreciates the convening of a meeting of experts to discuss the issue last June. This meeting has examined the issues which are important to deal with this problem effectively. In this connection, the Group is pleased with the conclusions and priority areas identified and expresses its satisfaction on the finding that there is an immediate need to preserve existing nuclear knowledge with full involvement of the Agency and with effective international co-operation.
3. The Group thus hopes that the Agency will take the appropriate measures for the speedy implementation of the recommended priority areas identified by the experts' meeting last June. In this connection, the Group encourages the Secretariat to support greater participation of experts from developing countries in future meetings on this important matter. The Group also welcomes the Agency's initiative to place this important issue as a topic of discussion in the Scientific Forum to be held in conjunction with the 46th Session of the General-Conference.
4. With respect to Attachment 2, on the "Support to the Organization of African Unity's Pan African Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Eradication Campaign PATTEC", the Group stresses the importance of the Campaign to eradicate tsetse flies, and believes that successful implementation of the Plan of Action through utilization of the Sterile Insect Techniques is fundamental to solve the problem, which is one of the greatest constraints to the continent's socio-economic development.
5. The Secretariat is also encouraged to pursue its efforts to support the PATTEC Campaign by further conducting coordinated research projects and by organizing field visits to the affected areas in order to enhance public awareness of the poverty and health dimension of the problem.
6. In this connection, the Group believes that joint international action against the Tsetse fly represents an effective approach to tackle this issue. The major organizations, FAO, WHO, IAEA, are encouraged to coordinate their respective roles and responsibilities. In this sense, the Group welcomes the first joint press release by the OAU, FAO, WHO and IAEA, issued at the workshop held in May 2002 at the FAO headquarter, Rome.
7. With regard to Attachment 3, the Group of 77 notes with appreciation the progress made in the International Project on Innovative Nuclear Reactors and Fuel Cycles (INPRO), which we believe is appropriate and timely. The Group is of the general view that this technological innovation will provide an important option for future energy requirements and it is expected that the Agency, as the sole global intergovernmental organization for the promotion of the peaceful uses of nuclear energy shall coordinate all relevant activities for developing more cost-effective and safer nuclear power plants. The development of innovative, cost-effective, proliferation and sabotage resistant and environmentally friendly nuclear power technologies will encourage more developing countries to join the Project. Moreover, the innovative development in design on the small and medium size reactors make them an attractive proposition for developing countries interested in pursuing nuclear power programmes. Regarding the funding of this Project, the Group reiterates that this activity could be considered for funding under the regular budget, without prejudice to the Zero Real Growth (ZRG) criterion, as stated during the Board Meeting last March.
8. In relation to the report on the implementation of GC(45)/Res/12 E on 'Drought in Central America', the Group would like to express its appreciation for the developments since the 45th session of the General Conference 2001 especially in the framework of the Agency's technical cooperation programme on isotope hydrology, taking into account the different experiences derived of the applications of these techniques in other geographical regions and with a view to promoting better knowledge and use of water resources. In this regards, we encourage the Secretariat to pursue these efforts.
9. With these remarks, Mr. Chairman, the Group of 77 and China is pleased to take note of document GOV/2002/39. Thank you.

Agenda item 6.c: The financing of Technical Co-operation

Mr. Chairman,
The Group of 77 and China wishes to convey to you, Mr. Chairman, its sincere gratitude for your work in crafting an agreement on the financing of technical co-operation for the next few years. The Group also very much appreciates the efforts undertaken by Ambassadors Sreenivasan and Jenkins towards that goal.
Mr. Chairman,
2. Due to the special relevance of that agreement, the Group of 77 and China requests that its terms, as contained in the 'Note Issued by the Chairman of the Board of Governors - Financing of Technical Co-operation' dated July 30, 2002, be duly reflected in draft resolution 'B' - Technical Co-operation Fund Allocation for 2003 (document GC(46)/7).
Mr. Chairman,
3. The Group of 77 and China takes this opportunity to reiterate its view that the requirements of the Technical Co-operation Program and the will of the international community, rather than any financing formula, should determine the quantum of the TCF targets and Indicative Planning Figures (IPFs). In addition, all Member States of the Agency have underlined the importance of making the resources for Technical Co-operation adequate, predictable and assured.
4. In this connection, the Group considers that the balance among the various statutory activities of the Agency is of fundamental importance and believes that fixing of TCF targets and IPFs should not lead to any imbalance in the functioning of the Agency. The Group thus stresses that it is absolutely essential that the TCF should grow at least at a pace comparable to the pace of growth of the IAEA regular budget.
5. Finally, Mr. Chairman, the Group wishes to express its appreciation to all those Member States that have contributed to the Technical Co-operation Fund (TCF) their full target shares in a timely manner.
Thank you.

Agenda item 6.d: Restoration of Voting Rights (GOV/2002/39 -GC(46)/15)

Mr. Chairman,
The Group of 77 and China would like to express its appreciation for the report contained in document GOV/2002/39, on the Restoration of Voting Rights.
2. In this respect, the Group acknowledges the usefulness of the criteria and guidelines adopted in 1998 for the consideration of requests by Member States in arrears in the payment of their financial contributions to the Agency for the restoration of voting rights. In addition, the Group expresses the view that the scheme proposed in document GOV/1998/54/Rev.2 provides a reasonable tool to deal with the problem of accumulation of financial arrears. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

Agenda item 8: Any other business

Nuclear Security: Progress on measures to protect against nuclear terrorism

Mr. Chairman,
The Group of 77 and China has carefully considered document GOV/INF/2002/11 - GC(46)/14, which contains a report on the Agency's progress on measures to protect against nuclear terrorism, and would like to present the following remarks:

· The Group is glad to note that the Agency has adopted an integrated approach to planning and implementing measures to protect against nuclear terrorism. In this regard, the Agency is encouraged to further improve this coherent approach in order to ensure the relevance of the activities and their practical and cost-effective implementation.
· The Group also reiterates its principle position that the Agency should implement all its activities in a balanced manner, in line with the Agency's Statute. At the same time the Group stresses that the implementation of the activities to prevent nuclear terrorism should not take place at the expense of the established priorities of the Technical Co-operation Program. Such priorities are to be defined by recipient Member States according to their national interests and socio-economic development plans.
· The Group stresses the importance it attaches to the performance indicators and on having evaluation reports on a regular basis in order to enable Member States to assess progress in the implementation of the Agency's activities. This can be a useful guidance for Member States to determine the Agency's future budget funding estimates.
· In view of the severe financial constraints faced by several developing Member States, among other issues, the Group believes that the funding mechanism for these activities should continue to be voluntary.
· Given the relevance of the work of the Advisory Group on Nuclear Security (AdSec), the Group would like to be kept informed on its findings and recommendations.
· The Group welcomes the Secretariat's initiative to invite members of the Permanent Missions in Vienna to participate in a special programme on the final day of the International Conference on "Advances in destructive and non-destructive analysis for environmental monitoring and nuclear forensics" scheduled for October 2002 along with a tour of European Commissions' Institute for Trans-Uranium Elements at Karlsruhe, Germany.

World Summit on Sustainable Development, 26 August - 4 Sept. 2002, Johannesburg, South Africa

Mr. Chairman,
I would like now to refer to an issue of great importance to the Group of 77 and China, namely the World Summit on Sustainable Development, which recently concluded in Johannesburg.
2. The WSSD builds on the results of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development held in 1992 in Rio de Janeiro: several landmark agreements aimed at halting and reversing environmental destruction, poverty and inequality. In accepting Agenda 21, the international community agreed to integrate social and economic development with environmental protection, in a manner that can ensure the sustainability of our planet and the prosperity of all humanity.
3. These important decisions were reinforced by the conclusions reached at a series of international conferences covering such important issues as food security, health, energy, financing for development and the environment. The UN Millennium Summit stands out among these global conferences because its outcome, the Millennium Declaration, constitutes a united pledge made by the world's political leaders at the highest level.
4. The Group of 77 and China hopes that the commitments contained in the Millennium Declaration can truly translate into the Johannesburg Plan of Action, so that the goals that humanity has already set itself may come into being.
5. In this connection, the Group appreciates the update provided by the Secretariat on the Agency's participation in the WSSD and notes with satisfaction the partnership initiatives submitted by the Agency in the following areas: · Capacity Building and Technology Transfer in Sustainable Water Resources and Coastal Zone Management; · Indicators for Sustainable Energy Development; · Designing Country Profiles on Sustainable Energy Development; · Initiative on Harmful Algal Blooms.
6. The potential of nuclear science and its applications to address problems and issues relating to sustainable development is immense. The Group thus reiterates its view in favour of a wider interaction between the Agency and other international organizations, in particular in areas of high relevance to the promotion of sustainable socio-economic development. Moreover, we trust that the Agency's continued participation in relevant international events will contribute to greater public recognition and appreciation of the benefits of nuclear science and also attract extra funding for research activities and technical co-operation projects in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.
7. Finally, Mr. Chairman, the Group requests the Secretariat to periodically report on the progress achieved in relation to the initiatives presented by the Agency in Johannesburg.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman

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