Japan has pledged an additional contribution of two million euros to support the renovation of the IAEA’s nuclear applications laboratories in Seibersdorf, near Vienna.
Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida made the pledge during a meeting in Tokyo with IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano on 25 April.
The eight laboratories deliver technical assistance to IAEA Member States in the areas of food and agriculture, human health, the environment and the development of advanced scientific instruments. The laboratories train fellows and scientific visitors, conduct research and development and provide analytical services to Member State laboratories.
Japan has already contributed around €2.3 million to the modernisation of the laboratories under a €31-million project known as ReNuAL.
Director General Amano said the Japanese contribution, which follows a recent two million dollar pledge by the United States, would enable the Agency to start construction of two planned new buildings at Seibersdorf – the new Insect Pest Control Laboratory, and the Flexible Modular Laboratory.
“I am very grateful for this important pledge by the government of Japan,” Mr Amano said. “It comes at a very significant time and will allow us to start construction of both new buildings."
Minister Kishida expressed his government’s strong support for the Director General's work on the IAEA’s Atoms for Peace and Development mandate.
In his meetings with Minister Kishida and other senior officials, Mr Amano discussed the peaceful uses of nuclear technology.
He also briefed his Japanese counterparts on the Agency’s work to monitor and verify Iran’s implementation of its nuclear-related commitments under the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. Recent troubling developments concerning the nuclear programme of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea were also discussed.
"Japan is a very important partner for the IAEA across the full range of our activities,” the Director General said. “This pledge of support for our laboratories again underlines the priority that Japan attaches to the peaceful uses of nuclear technology.”