Statement by Ambassador Mitsuru Kitano at the IAEA Board of Governors Meeting in September 2016


Item 4:Measure to strengthen international cooperation in nuclear, radiation, transport and waste safety (a) Measure to strengthen international cooperation in nuclear, radiation, transport and waste safety (b)Building on the IAEA Action Plan on Nuclear Safety

Mr. Chairman,
This year marks the 5th anniversary since the Fukushima Daiichi accident. Since then, we have worked on strengthening nuclear safety, drawing on lessons learned from the accident. This year, Japan, as the president of the G7, hosted the Ise-Shima Summit  and other related meetings, where we discussed how to enhance nuclear safety.
Now we are stepping into a new stage of further enhancing nuclear safety, building on lessons learned from the IAEA Fukushima report, which was published last year, and experiences of the activities under the IAEA’s Nuclear Safety Action Plan.  With the increase in international nuclear cooperation including import and export of nuclear power plants, it is also necessary to reaffirm the importance of ensuring nuclear safety in international nuclear cooperation and that every stakeholder has a role to play.
In this regard, Japan recognizes that the DG report, GOV/INF/2016/10, is a useful document as it shows the direction for future activities of the IAEA in strengthening nuclear safety globally. Based on the report, it is important for Member States and the Secretariat to work together to continuously strengthen nuclear safety. Japan will actively contribute to this endeavor.
Progress on Decommissioning and Contaminated Water Management
Mr. Chairman,
Now, I’d like to share with the delegations on the progress of the decommissioning at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station.
The work of decommissioning and the management of the contaminated water at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station are unprecedentedly complex. However, the situation has been steadily improving for the past five years since the accident. The Japanese Government has been taking the leading role in this decommissioning process, based on its “Mid-and-Long-Term Roadmap towards the Decommissioning of TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station” which was revised last year. In particular, the installation of the sea-side impermeable wall since October 2015 took effect for reducing the contaminated groundwater flowing into the ocean. It has been confirmed that the radiation level of seawater inside the port area substantially decreased. The detection of the debris in the reactor pressure vessel is another important project to ensure the progress of decommissioning, as it will make the decommissioning work more secure.
Japan recognizes that providing information on the current status of decommissioning of Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station to the international community as well as our own people with full transparency, is of great importance and a responsibility Japan takes very seriously.
In this regard, Japan has been providing updated information on the progress of the recovery operation related to the Fukushima Daiichi accident in a comprehensive and timely manner to the IAEA Secretariat. And it has been uploaded on the IAEA website with the Secretariat’s comments. The latest information has just been updated on 16th September.
Points of view on Nuclear Safety
Mr. Chairman,
Now, I’d like to raise some points which we attach importance in nuclear safety.
(International Legal Frameworks for Nuclear Safety)
First, it is important to strengthen the international legal frameworks for nuclear safety.
The Convention on Nuclear Safety (CNS) provides a platform for contracting parties to conduct peer reviews on their respective actions for nuclear safety of their nuclear facilities. With more countries embarking on nuclear power, the universalization of the CNS and strengthening of the Convention’s review process taking into account the Vienna Declaration adopted last year are very important.
In preparation for the 7th Review Meeting next year, Japan submitted our national report last month which includes more information in line with the Vienna Declaration. Japan would like to contribute to the Review meeting next March and encourage all contracting parties to participate  actively in the meeting.
We are also of the view that it is important for more countries to join other international legal frameworks such as the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management, Convention on Assistance in the Case of Nuclear Accident or Radiological Emergency, and Convention on Early Notice of a Nuclear Accident, as well as the frameworks on nuclear liabilities. In this connection, Japan is going to organize a side event on the benefits of the Convention on Supplementary Compensation for Nuclear Damage(CSC) together with other CSC Contracting Parties, in order to enhance the understanding on the CSC, which entered into force in April last year. It would be highly appreciated if many countries would participate in this event.
(Emergency Preparedness and Response)
Secondly, preparedness and response for the nuclear or radiological incidents and emergency is another important element for nuclear safety.
Emergency Preparedness and Response, or EPR, is a critical area for deepening international cooperation, fully drawing on the lessons learned from the Fukushima Daiichi accident. In this respect, we are pleased to see that the IAEA Response and Assistance Network-Capacity Building Center in Fukushima has been making significant contribution for Japan and other countries to improve their capacity in EPR. Japan will continue to fully support the IAEA in this area, including the activities of the CBC in Fukushima. 
(A Diversity of Nuclear Safety challenges)
Thirdly, nuclear safety is not just a matter for countries operating nuclear power stations, but also for a larger number of countries using radioactive sources in non-power sectors. Recognizing the diversity of nuclear safety challenges due to the wider use of nuclear technology, we need to deal with them in a systematic and coherent way.
Ensuring the nuclear safety infrastructure is essential for the countries considering the introduction of nuclear power plants. Japan expects that the IAEA can provide further assistance in this area. Japan will make every effort to support the countries newly introducing nuclear power plants to establish the safety infrastructure, through such measures as supporting the IAEA review missions, with extra budgetary contributions.
Regarding non-power sectors, support in capacity building for countries using radioactive sources is a key for nuclear safety. Japan will continue to actively support measures to ensure safer use of radioactive sources through the Agency.
Japan also would like to reiterate that transport safety is another important area. Japan is making a contribution to the trust building in this regard, having served as the chair of the Informal Dialogue between
Coastal and Shipping States this year.

(Public Communication)
Last, but not least, we cannot emphasize more the importance of public communication on nuclear safety.
Any failure on our part to effectively communicate with the general public following nuclear or radiological incidents will lead to the general public losing their confidence in nuclear safety.
Our own experiences of Fukushima showed the importance of disseminating data and information in a timely manner and in the right context.
In this regard, Japan will actively support activities of the IAEA to help Member States to improve their public communication.

With these comments, my delegation wishes to take note of the documents contained in GOV/2016/33.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.