On Thursday, 28 November 2013, the IAEA Board of Governors meeting commenced at the Agency's Headquarters in Vienna, Austria.
In his opening statement to the Board, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano congratulated the Republic of San Marino on becoming the 160th Member State of the IAEA.
In referring to the IAEA Technical Cooperation (TC) programme and the just-concluded Technical Assistance and Cooperation Committee meeting, the Director General stated that "For over fifty years now, the TC programme has proved its worth on the ground, helping Member States to use peaceful nuclear technology to bring real benefits to their people. The programme has proven to be adaptable and capable of responding to Member State needs effectively." He highlighted an example of one of the 532 new projects proposed for the next TC cycle work: "an important new inter-regional project to improve understanding of the impact of climate change on fragile polar and mountainous ecosystems. The proposed four-year project would address the retreat of glaciers, the loss of permafrost, and the reduction in snow cover resulting from climate change."
The full text of the statement can be accessed here. See Story Resources for video excerpts of the statement.
During their two-day deliberations, the 35-Member State Board will discuss a number of issues, including the Technical Cooperation: Report of the Technical Assistance and Cooperation Committee, which includes the recommendations on the proposed programme for 2014-2015 and the evaluation of the technical cooperation activities in 2013.
The Board will also receive an update on the Implementation of the IAEA Action Plan on Nuclear Safety that includes a report on the Agency assessment and prognosis to an emergency at nuclear power plants.
At this meeting, the Agency's activities related to nuclear verification will also include discussions on the Department of Safeguards staff being used as Agency inspectors.
Board deliberations are also expected on the application of safeguards in the Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the Implementation of the NPT Safeguard Agreements and Relevant Provisions of the United Nations Security Council Resolutions in the Islamic Republic of Iran as well as the NPT safeguards agreement in the Syrian Arab Republic.
The Third Amendment to the Agreement for Cooperation between the Agency and the United States of America is also on the Board agenda for discussion.