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IAEA Completes Nuclear Security Review Mission in Japan

Tokyo, Japan

A team of International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) experts today completed a mission to review national nuclear security practices in Japan.

Starting 16 February, the IAEA conducted a two-week International Physical Protection Advisory Service (IPPAS) mission at the request of Japan's Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA). The mission reviewed the nation's nuclear security regime as well as the security setup at nuclear facilities.

During the mission, NRA officials briefed the IPPAS team on the legislative and regulatory framework for nuclear security as well as computer and information security arrangements. The team reviewed physical protection systems at three sites: the Fast Critical Assembly (FCA) and the Plutonium Fuel Production facility (PFPF) operated by Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) on 19 February; and the Hamaoka Nuclear Power Station operated by Chubu Electric Power Co., Inc. on 20 February.

The team concluded that, overall, the nuclear security regime and the implementation of physical protection measures for nuclear facilities and nuclear material in Japan was robust, sustainable, and had been significantly enhanced in recent years. The team identified a number of good practices in the nation's nuclear security regime and at the facilities visited. The IPPAS team also provided recommendations and suggestions for the continuous improvement of nuclear security.

"The invitation by Japan of this IPPAS mission demonstrates its commitment to the continuous improvement of its national nuclear security regime. We welcome the width of the scope reviewed, covering the overall regime and security systems at three facilities, and after the successful outcome of this IPPAS Mission we welcome Japan's commitment to take the necessary follow-up measures," said Denis Flory, IAEA Deputy Director General and Head of the Department of Nuclear Safety and Security.

"The outcome of the IPPAS mission review will be extremely useful for us to further improve our nuclear security regime in Japan. Hereafter, the NRA will fully examine the recommendations and suggestions to be presented in the final report of the mission and strive to take the necessary measures. Also, the NRA recognizes that it is necessary to receive a follow-up mission and also further missions to review other modules of the IPPAS," said Shunichi Tanaka, Chairman of the NRA.

The IAEA team was composed of eight experts from six countries including Finland, Indonesia, Netherlands, Slovenia, United Kingdom as well as the IAEA Secretariat. It was led by Joseph Sandoval, a staff member from the Sandia National Laboratories in the United States.

While in Japan, the team also met with officials from other government ministries and agencies.


This was the 66th IPPAS mission conducted by the IAEA since the programme began in 1995, and Japan is the 42nd country to host an IPPAS mission.

IPPAS missions are intended to help States strengthen their national nuclear security regime. The missions provide peer advice on implementing international instruments, and IAEA guidance on the protection of nuclear and other radioactive material and associated facilities and activities.

The missions call upon a team of international experts to assess a nation's system of physical protection, compare it with international best practices and make recommendations for improvement. IPPAS missions are conducted both on a nationwide and facility-specific basis.

Last update: 16 Feb 2018

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