Statement by Ambassador HIKIHARA Takeshi at the IAEA Board of Governors Meeting starting on Monday, 11 September 2023 Item 5: Strengthening the Agency’s activities related to nuclear science, technology and applications

Thank you, Chair,
Japan thanks the Secretariat for preparing a comprehensive and informative report on this item.
The peaceful uses of nuclear science and technology can make a tangible contribution to effectively addressing imminent global challenges and facilitating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for the SDGs.
Japan highly appreciates the IAEA’s long-standing contribution to the promotion of the peaceful uses of nuclear energy and its active engagement in addressing various global challenges. Nuclear science and technology have huge potential to better meet the fundamental needs of people, and the Agency has been materializing this in diverse areas. Recognizing this contribution, Japan strongly supports the IAEA’s significant initiatives, including ZODIAC, NUTEC Plastics and Rays of Hope.
Japan also stresses the importance of the role to be played by the IAEA in various international fora for global issues, including the 1st Preparatory Committee for the NPT Review conference held in July and August.
Japan believes the level of accessibility to nuclear science and technology should be further improved for the benefit of the largest possible number of people.  To this end, Japan will continue to provide various means of support and work together with the Agency and other Member States.  We hope that the Agency will continue to play the central role in promoting the peaceful uses of nuclear technology by making the most of its unique knowledge and expertise in nuclear science, technology and applications.
In this regard, Japan took note with a lot of interest that DG made a reference to a new initiative called "Atoms4Food" in his introductory statement yesterday. Japan has gained significant experiences in the application of nuclear technology for increased, safer, value-added food production and supply chain. Based upon these experiences, Japan has continuously contributed to the development of agricultural application in Asia through the framework of FNCA (Forum for Nuclear Cooperation in Asia). We look forward to hearing more concretely on this very opportune initiative and to exploring possibilities for our cooperation.
Japan also welcomes the IAEA’s strengthened efforts on fusion. Japan has continuously invested in fusion R&D, especially in the ITER Project in France along with 6 other Parties. Japan is also implementing, together with the EU, the Broader Approach Activities at the Rokkasho-site, Aomori Prefecture and the Naka-site, Ibaraki Prefecture in Japan. This July we had the honor to welcome DG Grossi to the Rokkasho-site. Additionally, the state-of-the-art research tokamak JT-60SA at the Naka-site is planned to achieve its first plasma this autumn.
Japan has published the Fusion Energy Innovation Strategy this April for industry, academia, and government to collaborate further, aiming to accelerate the realization of fusion energy. Japan possesses a wide range of technological advantages, reliable manufacturing industries, basic research infrastructures and human resources in this area, with which we are happy to contribute to the success of the 29th IAEA Fusion Energy Conference (FEC 2023) to be held in London next month.
Taking this opportunity, let me briefly touch upon the two side events which Japan is organizing on the margins of the upcoming IAEA General Conference: one on High Temperature Gas Cooled Reactor (HTGR) and the other on capacity building.
The first side event, scheduled at 10:00 on 27th September in Conference Room CR4, highlights the characteristics and potentials of HTGR including the plans for DEMO. The DEMO project is an essential element in the Basic Policy for the Realization of GX (Green Transformation) of Japan, published this February, and with the involvement of international partners. Japan also has a unique plan to demonstrate the hydrogen production using the secondary high temperature coolant from HTTR, the test reactor at the Oarai-site, Ibaraki Prefecture. Hydrogen is expected to offer ways to decarbonize a range of sectors including long-haul transport, chemicals, and iron and steel and to bring about a significant impact on society as a whole in its Green Transformation.
The second side event will be held at 13:00 on 26th September at ESPACE M0E, and will focus on JAEA’s long-lasting efforts on capacity building to ensure 3S, Safety, Security and Safeguards, which contribute to developing human resources necessary and indispensable for the introduction of nuclear power plants from its initial stage. Japan has been strengthening diversified, in-depth collaborations in this field with international partners and the IAEA. We will continuously support emerging countries in a manner that matches their needs, so that they can tackle their challenges towards a sustainable new nuclear era.

With these comments, Japan takes note of the Agency’s report, GOV/2023/34-GC (67)/11.
Thank you, Chair.