Group of 77 and China statement during the IAEA Board of Governors,
15-19 September 2014, delivered by H.E. Ambassador Lourdes O. Yparraguirre, PR of the
Agenda Item 3: Report by the Co-Chairs of the Working Group on Financing the Agency’s Activities (WGFAA), including to examine the ways and means to render resources for the Technical Cooperation Fund sufficient, assured and predictableMeasures to strengthen international cooperation in nuclear, radiation, transport and waste safety
1. The Group of 77 and China wishes to thank the Co-Chairs of the Working Group on Financing the Agency’s Activities (WGFAA), including to examine the ways and means to render resources for the Technical Cooperation Fund sufficient, assured and predictable, the Permanent Representatives of France and Kenya, Ambassador Marion Paradas and Michael Oyugi, respectively, for their introductory remarks under this agenda item.
2. The Group of 77 and China would like to express its satisfaction with the report of the Working Group. This report is the result of a process of discussions that has been intensive and difficult at times, but that, through the dexterous guidance of the Co-Chairs and the committed and constructive involvement of Member States, has brought about a number of very important recommendations, many of them very concrete and results-oriented in nature.
3. Lastly, the Group of 77 and China would like to thank the Secretariat for the thorough briefings and the useful information provided throughout the meetings of the Working Group, especially in the course of the initial sessions.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Agenda Item 4(a): Measures to strengthen international cooperation in nuclear, radiation, transport and waste safety
1. The Group of 77 and China wishes to thank Deputy Director General Denis Flory for his remarks under this agenda item, as well as the Department of Nuclear Safety and Security for the briefing provided to Member States on September 3rd.
2. The Group of 77 and China thanks the Secretariat for the Report on the Measures to Strengthen International Cooperation in Nuclear, Radiation, Transport and Waste Safety contained in document GOV/2014/40-GC(58)/19, which covers the period comprised between 1 July 2013 and 30 June 2014 and which responds to the request made by the General Conference at its fifty-seventh session in resolution GC(57)/RES/9. The Group would like to make the following comments with respect to this document:
3. The Group of 77 and China attaches great importance to the issue of nuclear safety, which represents a key element in any nuclear programme. While recognizing that the primary responsibility for nuclear safety rests with the States, the Group believes that the Agency plays an essential role in this field as provided for in Article III of the Statute. The Group stresses that the Agency must retain a central role in this field, owing to its mandatory functions, its broad membership and its long-standing expertise.
4. At the same time, the Group would like to reiterate its principled position that nuclear safety and nuclear security considerations should not be used to hamper the utilization of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
5. The Group highlights the importance of the Agency’s work in maintaining and improving nuclear, radiation, transport and waste safety worldwide. In this context, the Group notes the Agency's continuous efforts aimed at supporting Member States in the sharing of knowledge, expertise, technology and information on all aspects of nuclear safety.
6. The Group expresses its appreciation for the Agency’s continuing efforts to promote nuclear safety worldwide and reiterates its support for the Agency’s activities aimed at supporting nuclear safety infrastructure development in Member States, including those introducing nuclear power or expanding their existing programs, upon their request. The Group appreciates, in particular, the assistance provided by the Agency to developing countries embarking on nuclear power programmes and, in this regard, the focus on areas such as capacity building, human resource development and the establishment of management systems. The Group encourages the Agency to continue its efforts in assisting interested Member States in the development of capacities and technical skills in nuclear safety as well as in strengthening the regulatory system and infrastructure needed in the development of nuclear energy.
7. The Group takes note of the different activities carried out by the Secretariat during the reporting period in compliance with the safety resolution adopted by the General Conference at its fifty-seventh session. In this regard, the Group is pleased with the progress made in the preparation and update of relevant safety guides. The Fukushima accident has brought nuclear safety to the forefront of global attention and has underlined the important contribution that the IAEA can make in this field. The Group welcomes the different international experts’ meetings organised by the Secretariat to analyse all relevant technical aspects and learn the lessons from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident. The Group requests the Secretariat to find ways to build upon the findings of these international experts’ meetings.
8. The Group also views favourably the encouragement given by the Agency to the activities of regional safety forums and related networks. With respect to the Global Nuclear Safety and Security Network (GNSSN), the Group notes with satisfaction the development by the Secretariat of the GNSSN Governance Plan and the GNSSN Strategy Plan, as well as the fact that more than 70 activities involving over 1000 participants from more than 90 Member States in safety networks under the GNSSN were conducted under the reporting period. The Group encourages the Agency to further pursue activities aimed at strengthening regional safety forums and related networks, as mandated by the General Conference.
9. The Group commends the Agency for the activities carried out in the field of radiation safety and environmental protection under the reporting period, including, inter alia, through the development of relevant safety guides and the organization of regional workshops. The Group also notes with satisfaction that the Agency has continued to conduct activities aimed at strengthening radiation protection in medicine. The Group looks forward to the International Conference co-sponsored by the International Labor Organisation and 14 other international organisations on Occupational Radiation Protection that will be held next December in Vienna.
10. The Group also welcomes the creation of a Working Group on International Standards Related to Food and Water Contaminated with Radionuclides as a Result of a Nuclear or Radiological Emergency, and is pleased to note that this is being undertaken as an interdisciplinary effort, with representatives of the IAEA, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the World Health Organisation, and the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP), among others.
11. The Group of 77 and China attaches high importance to transport safety, and appreciates the involvement of the Secretariat in international efforts to discuss issues related to radioactive material transport and harmonization of transport guidelines. The Group is pleased to note that the third Technical Meeting to follow up on the findings and recommendations of the 2011 International Conference on the Safe and Secure Transport of Radioactive Material was held in Vienna last April. The Group also takes note of the establishment of a Transport Facilitation Working Group (TFWG) in late 2013, aimed at maintaining efforts on reducing denials of radioactive material shipments, and, in a broader context, welcomes and encourages efforts to address problems related to denials of and delays in the shipment of radioactive material, as mandated by the General Conference in the safety resolution adopted at the fifty-seventh session.
12. With respect to the activities reported under the section pertaining to the Safe Decommissioning of Nuclear Facilities and Other Facilities Using Radioactive Material, the Group of 77 and China appreciates the Agency’ s continued efforts to assist Member States in the safe decommissioning of nuclear facilities, and notes with interest the Agency’s Report on Decommissioning and Remediation after a Nuclear Accident published in September 2013, drawing attention to the challenges associated with the decommissioning of nuclear facilities damaged by a severe accident and recommending that the Agency assist Member States in the development of decommissioning strategies for such facilities. The Group encourages the Secretariat to continue to work in this important area, and to share with Member States lessons learned, as called for in the respective General Conference resolution.
13. The Group attaches great importance to the work carried out by the Agency in the field of safety and security of radioactive sources. In this regard, the Group notes with satisfaction that an International Conference on the Safety and Security of Radioactive Sources was held in October 2013 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates (UAE). The Group requests the Secretariat to make the report of the conference available to Member States as soon as possible, noting that the topic will also be discussed at an open-ended meeting in October 2014.
14. The efforts of the Agency in the area of education and training and knowledge management in nuclear, radiation, transport and waste safety are of foremost importance to the Group of 77 and China. The Group supports the Agency’s efforts to develop tools to capture and preserve the Agency’s knowledge and organizational memory in nuclear safety and security by preserving, capturing and enhancing the transfer of knowledge.
15. The development of human resources is a key element for the sustainability of any nuclear programme. The Group notes with satisfaction the Secretariat’s efforts in addressing this issue, in particular, effort to utilize new technologies, such as online training courses to reduce costs and broaden the participation of Member States, and efforts to strengthen the training modules and materials related to safety infrastructure. The Group welcomes the regional workshops held in Africa in June and in Latin America in July, and is pleased to note that one such workshop will take place in Asia and the Pacific next November. The Group strongly encourages the Agency to continue to help Member States build competence in radiation safety through postgraduate courses and training events such as “train the trainers” courses imparted to developing countries in the field of radiation protection. The “train the trainers” program is an important tool to achieve self-sufficiency in education and training activities in Member States, and constitutes a vehicle to a real transfer of technology. The Group encourages the Secretariat to further enhance the use of this program.
16. With these remarks, the Group of 77 and China takes note of document GOV/2014/40-GC(58)/19.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Agenda item 4(b): Implementation of the IAEA Action Plan on Nuclear Safety
1. The Group of 77 and China would like to thank the Secretariat for the third annual progress report on the progress made by it in the implementation of the IAEA Action Plan on Nuclear Safety contained in GOV/INF/2014/15-GC(58)/INF/7, as well as for the document containing supplementary information. The Group also thanks Deputy-Director General Denis Flory for his introductory remarks under this agenda item, as well as the Department of Nuclear Safety and Security for the briefing provided to Member States on September 3rd.
2. The report under consideration by the Board of Governors in the current session focuses on the key areas of progress in the implementation of the Action Plan since the submission of the previous annual report to the Board of Governors and General Conference in September 2013. In this regard, the Group of 77 and China would like to make the following comments:
3. The Group reiterates its appreciation for the continuing efforts undertaken by the Agency to promote nuclear safety worldwide, and welcomes the diverse activities of the Agency in this area during the reporting period. While recognizing that the primary responsibility for nuclear safety rests with the States, the Group believes that the Agency plays an important role in this field as provided for in Article III of the Statute. The Group remains of the view that that nuclear safety considerations should not be used to hamper the utilization of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes, that the purpose of enhancing nuclear safety should be to positively contribute to the development and utilization of nuclear technology for peaceful uses, and that the Agency should orient its programmes in this regard.
4. The Group notes with appreciation the Agency’s activities in connection with the implementation of the Plan since the last Report.
5. The Group further notes that, as reflected in the report under consideration, the Secretariat continued to share and disseminate the lessons learned from the Fukushima Daiichi accident by analysing the relevant technical aspects. The Group underscores the importance of the revision of the Agency's broad range of assistance and support services to Member States to take into account the lessons from the accident.
6. The Group notes with satisfaction that, as reported by the Secretariat, progress has been made in the preparation of the IAEA Fukushima Report during the reporting period, in terms of completion of the first stage of the drafting process, and that the Secretariat expects to finalise the draft report this December, with a view to its publication in 2015. The Group requests the Secretariat to keep Member States informed of the progress in the drafting of this important document, providing regular updates on the expected date of its completion, and further requests that the full report be issued sufficiently in advance to allow for proper consideration.
7. The Group notes the progress made in the assessment of the safety vulnerabilities of Nuclear Power Plants, the strengthening of the Agency’s peer review services, improvements in emergency preparedness and response capabilities, including improving public information and enhancing transparency and communication during emergency situations, strengthening and maintaining capacity building, and protecting people and the environment from ionizing radiation. The Group is pleased to note the conclusion contained in the report under consideration, as well as the conclusion that progress in these and other areas has contributed to the enhancement of the global nuclear safety framework. The Group further notes that the Secretariat has taken steps to strengthen its capability to provide assessment and prognosis during a nuclear emergency.
8. With respect to emergency preparedness and response, the Group notes that during the period under review the Secretariat continued to undertake activities to support Member States’ EPR arrangements at the interregional, regional and national levels, organising training events on relevant topics such as communication with the public and the medical response to a radiation emergency; coordinating the ConvEx-3 (2013) exercise held last November and hosted by Morocco; and the review of the National Assistance Capabilities under the Agency’s Response and Assistance Network (RANET). The Group notes that further work needs to be undertaken to strengthen communication with the public and all stakeholders in the event of a nuclear or radiological emergency, and encourages the Secretariat to continue to pursue its work in this important area.
9. In the section of the report on the Agency’s safety standards, the Group notes the progress reported by the Secretariat in the systematic review of the Agency’s safety standards to take account of the lessons learned from the Fukushima Daiichi accident, through revisions to the Safety Requirements relating to the safety of Nuclear Power Plants and the storage of spent nuclear fuel.
10. With respect to the section of the report on the activities carried out by the Secretariat regarding Member States embarking or planning to embark on a nuclear power programme and capacity building, the Group welcomes the continued support provided to these member States by the Secretariat, encourages the latter to continue to pursue these efforts, and—as stated by the Group in its statement under the preceding sub-item of the agenda—concurs with the Secretariat on the importance of the knowledge safety networks under the Global Nuclear Safety and Security Network (GNSSN). The Group also welcomes the assistance provided by the Secretariat to interested Member States in the development of National Nuclear Regulatory Portals (NNRPs), as well as its efforts to strengthen the competence and knowledge management activities of national regulatory bodies.
11. Lastly, the Group reiterates its request to the Secretariat to provide information in future reports on the implementation of the Action Plan on Nuclear safety on cost implications of the activities under the Plan, especially with regard to the budget and their impact on other future activities of the Agency.
12. With these remarks, the Group takes note of the Director General's report on the Progress in the Implementation of the IAEA Action Plan on Nuclear Safety as contained in document GOV/INF/2014/15-GC(58)/INF/7, and in the document with supplementary information to the progress report.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Agenda item 5: Nuclear Security Report 2014
1. The Group of 77 and China thanks the Secretariat for preparing the Nuclear Security Report 2014, as contained in document GOV/2014/36-GC(58)/14. It also thanks the Deputy Director-General Denis Flory for his introductory comments under this agenda item, as well as the Department of Nuclear Safety and Security for the technical briefing provided to delegations on September 3rd.
2. The Group of 77 and China would like to make the following comments on the document under consideration of the Board under this agenda item:
3. The Group reiterates its view that, as stated in paragraph 2 of the Nuclear Security Report for 2014, the responsibility for nuclear security rests entirely with each State.
4. The Group reiterates its views that the measures to strengthen nuclear security should not hamper international cooperation in the field of peaceful nuclear activities, bearing in mind that, in the discharge of its functions in the field of nuclear security, the Secretariat should keep in mind the adequate balance between activities in the promotional and other areas.
5. The Group concurs with the notion that the role of the Agency in enhancing nuclear security and the scope of its activities must be determined by the Member States, as reflected in the Board decisions and General Conference resolutions.
6. The Group appreciates the Agency’s continued efforts to assist Member States, upon their request, to build and develop their nuclear security capacity by establishing and providing for the application of nuclear security guidance; facilitating adherence to, and implementation of the relevant international legal instruments; and helping States to establish effective, sustainable and comprehensive national nuclear security infrastructures.
7. The Group takes note of the increase of adherence, during the reporting period, of Member States to the international legal instruments relevant to nuclear security, in particular to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material and the 2005 Amendment; and the International Convention on the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism.
8. The Group notes with interest that section C of the report makes reference to the International Conference on Nuclear Security which took place in Vienna from 1 to 5 July 2013, and that reference is made therein to the fact that the Ministerial Declaration adopted on that occasion affirmed the central role of the Agency in strengthening the nuclear security framework globally and in leading the coordination of international activities in the field of nuclear security, while avoiding duplication and overlap.
9. The Group welcomes the increase in the number of States that participate in the Agency's Incident and Trafficking Database Programme (ITDB), and is pleased to note that, in terms of outreach, the Secretariat has participated in sub regional meetings on ITDB information exchange and coordination that have helped improve understanding of ITDB processes and reporting. The Group is also pleased to note that the Secretariat resumed the production of biennial reports on the analysis of threats, trends and patterns in ITDB incidents, and that a report covering a six year period, from 2007 to 2012, since the last 2005-2006 biennial report, was made available to ITDB points of contact, through the Nuclear Security Information Portal (NUSEC). While noting that the next biennial ITDB analysis report, for 2013-2014, is planned to be issued to points of contact in 2015, the Group calls on the Secretariat to maintain its regularity in the production of its biennial reports.
10. The Group appreciates the continued efforts of the Agency in responding to the expressed needs of Member States in developing, upon request, Integrated Nuclear Security Support Plans (INSSPs) to assist them in implementing their respective national nuclear security plans in a manner that would optimise resources and avoid duplication of activities.
11. The Group welcomes the continued development of the Nuclear Security Information Portal (NUSEC), including the upgrade introduced in December 2013 to achieve better stability and performance, as well as further development of the Nuclear Security Information Management System (NUSIMS) as a self-assessment tool, assisting States in reviewing their nuclear security infrastructure and tracking their progress.
12. The Group appreciates the work of the Nuclear Security Guidance Committee and views with satisfaction the efforts of the Secretariat to foster the participation of all Member States in the process of development and review of the Agency’s Nuclear Security Series publications. The Group reiterates its call on the Secretariat to further facilitate a broader participation of representatives from developing countries in its meetings, with a view to ensuring greater transparency and consensus in the development of such publications.
13. The Group commends the Secretariat for its work on the Implementing Guides as reported in the document under review.
14. Regarding the activities reported under the section of the report on nuclear security services, the Group welcomes the Agency’s continued support to the development of global nuclear security education, primarily through the International Nuclear Security Education Network (INSEN). In this regard, the Group notes with appreciation that during the reporting period, the Agency provided nuclear security training to nearly 3000 individuals mainly in the areas of prevention and detection and response, and that this represents an increase of 37% over the previous reporting period. The Group encourages the Secretariat to enhance its activities oriented at capacity-building in Member States, particularly in developing countries, thus helping maintain adequate human resources with the necessary training and competence.
15. The Group notes the assistance provided to Member States wishing to establish Nuclear Security Training and Support Centres (NSSCs). The Group also notes the activities carried out by the Secretariat after the establishment of an International Network for NSSCs in 2012, in particular efforts to enhance its coordination and cooperation with the INSEN primarily through the establishment of a common database of organisations offering education, training and other human resource development and capacity building services to Member States.
16. The Group notes with appreciation the nuclear security evaluation missions and advisory services offered to Member States upon their request.
17. The Group takes note of the Agency’s activities, undertaken at the request of Member States, in the area of risk reduction and calls on the Secretariat to enhance its efforts aimed at strengthening the capabilities of personnel in Member States, while also facilitating the enhancement of national physical protection systems in interested Member States, with a view to developing sustainable nuclear security regimes.
18. With these remarks, the Group takes note of the Nuclear Security Report 2014, as contained in document GOV/2014/36-GC(58)/14.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Agenda Item 6: Strengthening the Agency's activities related to nuclear science, technology and applications
1. The Group of 77 and China thanks the Secretariat for the report on Agency activities in the area of nuclear science, technology and applications as contained in GOV/2014/46-GC(58)/18, in response to General Conference resolutions GC(56)/RES/12 and GC(57)RES/12.
2. The work done by the Agency in nuclear power and nuclear applications highlights the need to increase the transfer of nuclear technology and the sharing of nuclear knowledge to developing countries so as to enhance the capabilities of the latter and thus contribute to maximize the benefit of peaceful uses of nuclear energy. The Group urges the Agency to continue to provide training and education, to support national laboratories and to further enhance the coordinated research activities. The Group also welcomes the contributions made by Member States to various Agency projects, and encourages all Member States in a position to do so to continue providing such support through the Agency.
3. On Annex 1, on the Development of the Sterile Insect Technique for the Control or Eradication of Malaria-Transmitting Mosquitoes, the Group notes with appreciation the Agency’s efforts, in particular through the Insect Pest Control Laboratory (IPCL) of the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture in Seibersdorf, as well as the support provided to member States through technical cooperation projects, both national and regional. The Group also values the important support provided by donor countries, both financial as well as in the form of cost-free experts. The Group takes note of the conclusion in paragraph 22 of Annex 1 of the report, stating that mosquito-borne diseases such as malaria, dengue, yellow fever and chikungunya remain among the most severe threats to the health of millions of people worldwide, and strongly encourages the Agency to continue to pursue its efforts, bearing in mind that sterile insect techniques need to be complemented with long-term strategies aimed at developing the tools required for the implementation of a fully operational programme in Member States, and that further efforts need to be pursued for the direct control of diseases such as malaria or dengue.
4. On Annex 2, on the Support to the African Union’s Pan African Tsetse and Trypanosomosis Eradication Campaign (AU-PATTEC), the Group appreciates the Agency’s continuous efforts to support the AU-PATTEC Plan of Action through TC projects providing training, expert services and equipment to countries in the African region affected by this problem. The Group encourages the continuation of these activities to successfully eradicate tsetse and Trypanosomosis from the African continent. The Group further encourages Member States to contribute additional funds in order to ensure the sustainability of the program.
5. On Annex 3, Strengthening the support to Member States in Food and Agriculture, the Group commends the Agency for the work carried out in response to a demand of technical assistance from Member States that remains high in the area of nuclear applications in food and agriculture. The Group notes with appreciation the work done since the fifty-seventh session of the General Conference. In this regard, it welcomes the 32nd International Scientific Council for Trypanosomiasis Research and Control Conference held in Khartoum, Sudan, in September 2013, and the twelfth meeting of the PATTEC national coordinators in November of that year, including the review of the AU-PATTEC Strategic Plan for 2012–2018 conducted on that occasion.
6. Capacity building remains a priority for the Group of 77 and China. In this context, the Group notes with appreciation that capacity building is one of the main components of the technical cooperation projects in this field, and that a regional training course on free open source software for geographic information systems and data management applied to tsetse and trypanosomosis control programmes was jointly organized by the FAO, AU-PATTEC and the Agency in Ethiopia, last May. The Group encourages the Agency to continue providing support in this regard.
7. On Annex 4, the Renovation of the Nuclear Applications Laboratories (ReNuAL) Project, the Group welcomes the issuance of an Addendum to the Strategy for the Renovation of the Nuclear Sciences and Applications Laboratories in Seibersdorf contained in GOV/INF/2014/11 of 20 May 2014, which provides an update to the ReNuAL project, making provision for the inclusion of the other elements in the strategy as ReNuAL Plus. The Group looks forward to further information in this regard in the future. The Group notes with appreciation the efforts that are being made to establish a Biosafety Level 3 laboratory capability for the IAEA in the near future and looks forward to further consultations in this regard. The Group attaches great importance to the role of the Agency’s Nuclear Application (NA) laboratories in Seibersdorf in developing and transferring nuclear related and complementary technologies that contribute significantly to food security and safety, medical dosimetry, water management and environmental protection, and calls on all Member States to support the renovation of these Laboratories.
8. On Annex 5, Nuclear Energy Activities, the Group reaffirms the interest of those Member States that are considering the introduction of nuclear power in their energy mix. The Group notes the projected rate of growth in nuclear power capacity as an indication of continuing interest of Member States in nuclear energy, as a proven, clean, safe and competitive technology. The Group believes that nuclear energy will make an increasing contribution to the sustainable development of human kind throughout the 21st century and beyond. The Group highly values the Agency’s central role in this regard, which is of particular importance in developing countries. In this regard, the Group welcomes the International Conference on Human Resource Development for Nuclear Power Programmes: Building and Sustaining Capacity, which the Agency hosted last May and which focused on the global challenges of capacity building, human resource development, education and training, nuclear knowledge management and the establishment of knowledge networks, and considered the challenges of preparing the next generation of nuclear professionals. The Group also notes with satisfaction the continued assistance provided by the Agency to Member States in training and capacity building in radioactive waste management.
9. On Annex 6, on the Agency Activities in the Development of Innovative Nuclear Technology, the Group is pleased to note the work carried out by the Agency’s International Project on Innovative Nuclear reactors and Fuel Cycles (INPRO), and recalls the recommendation made by the General Conference at its fifty-seventh session, that the Secretariat establish, through the consolidation of available resources and assistance from interested Member States, regular training courses and workshops on innovative nuclear technologies to exchange knowledge and experience in the area of innovative, globally sustainable nuclear energy systems. The Group notes that the INPRO work programme reflects the interests and priorities of its members which are in line with the Agency’s regular programme and that the results obtained under INPRO are in turn available to all IAEA Member States. However, the Group notes with concern that INPRO continues to rely mainly on extra-budgetary contributions from its members. The Group reiterates its view that the support to INPRO from the Agency’s regular budget should be enhanced.
10. The Group notes with appreciation the Agency’s role in monitoring and participating in worldwide activities on advanced and innovative technology development, fostering collaboration among Member States on selected innovative nuclear technologies and related research and development through several Technical Meetings and through Coordinated Research Projects.
11. On Annex 7, Producing Potable Water Economically Using Small and Medium Sized Nuclear Reactors, the Group supports the various activities undertaken by the Agency to assist Member States in developing safe, secure, economically viable and proliferation resistant SMRs. The Group notes with interest that although no meeting of the Technical Working Group on Nuclear Desalination (TWG-ND) has been held since the 57th regular session of the General Conference in September 2013 due to the biennial periodicity of this Group, the Agency has enhanced its scope to encompass activities related to integrated water resources management, more specifically on the efficient use of water in nuclear facilities. The Group encourages the Secretariat to do its utmost to support Member States in the conduct of innovative projects involving non-electric applications of nuclear power.
12. Finally, on Annex 8, Nuclear Knowledge Management, the Group welcomes the various activities carried out by the Agency in this area, and concurs with the view expressed in the report, that nuclear knowledge management is a cross-cutting issue that is important to all activities of the Agency and to its Member States. The Group attaches special importance to the application of nuclear knowledge management to development, and is pleased to note that a number of activities on knowledge management were included in the biennium in national, regional and interregional Technical Cooperation projects. The Group supports the inclusion of knowledge management activities in TC projects, which has resulted in the strengthening of capacities in the area of nuclear knowledge management and exchange of information, development of skills in the use and maintenance of equipment, safety culture, NPP planning, development of regulatory infrastructure, networking and use of information and communication technology to support education and knowledge exchange. The Group urges the Secretariat to continue to seek ways to increase awareness regarding the creation, preservation and sharing of nuclear knowledge and experience, to enhance activities of capacity building and sustainment, and to continue to foster the inclusion of knowledge management components in national and regional TC projects.
13. With these comments, the Group takes note of document GOV/2014/46-GC(58)/18.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
Statement by the Group of 77 and China during the IAEA Board of Governors on 29 September 2014 as delivered by H.E. Ambassador Lourdes O. Yparraguirre, Permanent Representative of The Philippines
Agenda item 5: Any other business
1. I have the honor to speak on behalf of the Group of 77 and China to thank the outgoing Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Vietnam, His Excellency Nguyen Thiep, for his successful Chairmanship of the Board of Governors between the 57th and 58th sessions of the General Conference.
2. The Group of 77 and China commends Ambassador Thiep and his team for their dedication and hard work over the past year. We wish him all the very best in his future endeavors.
3. The Group would also like to take this opportunity to express its appreciation to the President of the General Conference, Ambassador Aliyar Lebbe Abdul Azeez, for his excellent work and for his able stewardship of the 58th session of the General Conference.
4. The Group would like to commend the Permanent Representative of Australia, Ambassador David Stuart for his able Chairmanship of the Committee of the Whole.
5. The Group would like to congratulate you on your assumption as Chair of the Board of Governors. Our congratulations as well to your Vice-Chairs, Ambassador Christine Stix-Hackl, Governor for Austria, and Ambassador Khaled Abdelrahman Shamaa, Governor for Egypt.
6. We are confident that the Board will remain in good and steady hands as we move forward with the work of the Agency. Rest assured that you have the full support of the Group of 77 and China.