Curtain Falls on June Board
Governors Examine Summary Reports, Safeguards Matters
A bird´s-eye view of the June Board in session. (Photo: D. Calma/IAEA)
- Story Resources
- Board of Governors
- High-Level Panel Issues Report on the IAEA´s Future, 3 June 2008
- IAEA Board Begins June Deliberations, 2 June 2008
- IAEA General Conference
- In Focus: IAEA and Iran
A four-day meeting of the IAEA Board of Governors concluded today, with discussions on issues related to nuclear verification and review of IAEA reports on its full range of activities.
Upon completion of Director General Dr. Mohamed ElBaradei´s opening statement, the Board was addressed by former Mexican president Ernesto Zedillo, who chaired an independent commission which issued a set of recommendations on the future of the IAEA.
Full review of the IAEA´s Annual Report for 2007 was carried out during the Monday and Tuesday sessions. The report encapsulates the scope and outcomes of the IAEA´s work programme for 2007, providing an analysis of emerging trends across all activities. A full range of comments by Board Members on the report followed, with many also voicing their support for continuance of the Joint FAO/IAEA Division.
Evaluation of the Technical Cooperation Report for 2007 elicited positive comments by Board Members on the quality of the programme and efforts to strengthen it going forward. Governors also discussed funding aspects of the TC Programme and debated different approaches to delivery of projects to Member States.
The Programme and Budget Committee then reviewed accounts and budget particulars, and the Board recommended for General Conference approval a total regular budget of €299.2 million for the Agency for 2009.
Deliberations related to verification and safeguards formed the bulk of the Wednesday and Thursday sessions, with Governors discussing specifics of the Safeguards Implementation Report for 2007, along with dialogue on Agency verification activities related to the Democratic People´s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and Iran. On the status of safeguards agreements, a milestone was reported in that more than half of the States with comprehensive safeguards agreements in force now also have an Additional Protocol in force. Many Board Members also encouraged all States to sign, ratify, and implement further safeguards agreements, citing their importance in strengthening the non-proliferation regime. The Governors also recognized a recent Japanese extrabudgetary contribution of €6.91 million intended to support the Safeguards Analytical Laboratory.
The Iranian nuclear issue was brought up for consideration, with several States expressing concern that the Agency was "still not in a position to determine the full nature of Iran´s nuclear programme." Several members also welcomed Iran´s "willingness to engage in reviewing the Agency´s questions related to the alleged weaponization studies."
In his concluding remarks, Chairman Milenko E. Skoknic of Chile cited the Board´s emphasis for "the continued need for substantive and comprehensive negotiations and dialogue among all relevant parties covering all relevant issues" on the Iranian nuclear file.
A Cooperation Agreement between the IAEA and the International Fusion Energy Organization (ITER) was welcomed by Board members, who noted the importance of IAEA support for fusion power research. The Director General received Board authorization to conclude the agreement, which is subject to approval by the IAEA General Conference.
Final housekeeping activities of the meeting were provisional Board approval of the agenda both for the September Board meeting and the General Conference. The September Board will convene on 22 September and the 52nd General Conference is scheduled for 29 September – 3 October, 2008.
See Story Resources for more information.