Statement by Minister Hirotaka Matsuo at the IAEA Board of Governors Meeting starting on 4 March 2019: Agenda Item 2: Strengthening the Agency’s activities related to nuclear, radiation, transport and waste safety

Thank you, Chairperson,

In light of the increasing number of exporting nuclear power plants, and the growing importance of international cooperation on nuclear safety, Japan would like to actively contribute to the international cooperation to improve nuclear safety by making best use of our experiences in managing nuclear power plants. That includes their aging and decommissioning processes as well as the lessons learned from the Fukushima Daiichi accident.

Japan highly appreciates the activities of the Secretariat pertaining to the report,‘Nuclear Safety Review 2019, and would like to commend its efforts. We underline the importance of continued efforts by Member States to enhance their nuclear safety based on the achievements referred to in the report, and further cooperation with the IAEA.


While expressing our support to the Agency’s report, I would like to touch upon the matters on which Japan places importance as well as the activities of Japan in the area of nuclear safety.

< International Legal Frameworks for Nuclear Safety >

In ensuring nuclear safety, it is necessary to strengthen the international legal frameworks and to continue efforts for their effective implementation. Japan encourages those Member States, especially for embarking countries, which have not yet done so, to join the conventions related to nuclear safety.

Responsibility for the implementation of the Conventions lies with each Contracting Party. On the other hand, international cooperation is important considering the fact that knowledge sharing and mutual understanding facilitate the implementation and contributes to strengthening nuclear safety worldwide. The Review Meetings for the Convention on Nuclear Safety and the Joint Convention, including peer reviews of the implementation of the convention, are examples of such important international cooperation, and Japan remains committed to active participation.

<Emergency Preparedness and Response >


Emergency preparedness and response is one of the most important areas requiring further international cooperation.

In this connection, I would like to refer to the IAEA RANET Capacity Building Center in Fukushima. For the past few years, the Center has held 22 workshops and training courses. This Center provides a great contribution in capacity building on emergency response and preparedness, and serves to construct on networks among the participants from Member States.

Japan hopes that these activities strengthen Member States’ capabilities on EPR and also deepen communication between Member States and the Agency, as well as among all Member States. The Agency is planning workshops this year at the CBC-Fukushima, and Japan expects further active participation from Member States.

< Current Status of Fukushima Daiichi NPP >


I would like to take this opportunity to provide an update on the current situation regarding the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

The IAEA review mission was conducted last November and the final report was released at the end of January, which is on the website of the Government of Japan and the Agency. The experts provided their evaluation on such issues as useful advice on the progress of the decommissioning work, the measures on the management of contaminated water, the spent fuel removal and fuel debris retrieval, waste management, and public communication. Japan highly appreciates the work of the Agency and its experts.

As for marine monitoring around the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, IAEA experts have visited Japan to confirm the capability, data accuracy and precision of sampling methods of the Japanese analytical institutions.

This activity contributes to the reliability of the data published by the Japanese Government, and we deeply appreciate the support of the Agency. The activity report from 2014 to 2016 is posted on the IAEA's website. Additionally, the IAEA and related institutions’ experts are planning to visit Japan in June for the next marine monitoring project. We look forward to continuous cooperation with the Agency on marine monitoring activities.

With an aim to provide information related to the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, Japan has been providing the Secretariat with updated comprehensive information, as well as the results of environmental monitoring, the progress of decontamination, and the monitoring of food products. This information, together with the Secretariat’s comments, is available on the IAEA website, and the latest information will be updated soon.

Furthermore, I would like to refer to the corporate project between the Agency and Fukushima Prefecture on radiation monitoring and decontamination in Fukushima. The final report on the results of activities from 2013 to 2017 was published on the Fukushima Prefecture website, and a leaflet for the public was published in Japanese and in English. The remediation in Fukushima Prefecture is moving ahead through those efforts. Japan highly appreciates the support of the Agency, and would like to ask for further cooperation towards the reconstruction of Fukushima.

Last but not least,

As I mentioned, Japan continues to actively disseminate information on the progress of the aftermath of the Fukushima Accident based on scientific evidence in a transparent manner. I hope it will prove helpful in the understanding of the decommissioning of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant and progress of the reconstruction of Fukushima for the world.

Furthermore, we hope these efforts and experiences will help to further contribute to securing transparency and improving communication in nuclear safety.

With these comments, Japan takes note of the report contained in GOV/2019/3 and supports the issued publication of the Safety Requirements.

Thank you Chairperson.