The United Kingdom signed an agreement on 8 March 2011 to contribute £4 million, or approximately $6.4 million, to the IAEA´s Nuclear Security Fund, fulfilling a commitment it made at the 2010 Nuclear Security Summit in Washington, D.C. and making it the Fund´s second-largest national contributor with a total contribution of $19 million.
The IAEA´s Nuclear Security Fund, a voluntary funding mechanism set up in 2002 and designed to support IAEA activities in nuclear security, is working currently to improve worldwide security of nuclear and other radioactive material in use, storage and transport by supporting Member States´ efforts to establish, maintain and sustain effective national nuclear security regimes.
Simon Smith, Ambassador and Permanent Representative for the UK, and Denis Flory, the IAEA´s Deputy Director General of Nuclear Safety and Security, signed the agreement through which the UK will provide £4 million in funding for a two-year period, enabling both the completion of work started under its 2009 contribution, such as physical facilities upgrades, and the launch of new projects.
The contribution was made via the UK´s Global Threat Reduction Programme, its largest programme of non-proliferation assistance. The top contributors to the Agency´s Nuclear Security Fund are, in order, the United States, the European Union, the UK and Canada.
This new UK contribution will be used to assist national efforts to improve nuclear security through funding training, the provision of equipment and the upgrading of physical protection at facilities.