Hanoi, Jan 10: The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will provide support for Vietnam in constructing nuclear power plants.
The assurance was given by the UN nuclear watchdog’s chief, Yukiya Amano, who is presently visiting the country from Tuesday to Saturday, at the invitation of Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister Pham Binh Minh, Xinhua reported.
IAEA will send delegations of leading experts to Vietnam to discuss issues of infrastructure construction, safety and other nuclear-related issues. The agency also planned to send a delegation to the country annually to help with applications of atomic energy, the IAEA chief said.
In addition, the IAEA will support Vietnam through technical projects. During the 2012-2013 period, IAEA funded 1 million euro ($1.3 million) for Vietnam to develop these projects, including nuclear energy infrastructure and laboratory upgrading.
Vietnam is planning to build its first two nuclear power plants in Ninh Thuan province, some 1,100 km from capital Hanoi. The construction of the first plant is expected to start in 2014 and to be commissioned by 2020.
Vietnam joined the IAEA in 1978 and it was elected to the Board of Governors of the IAEA in 2013.
During the 2014-2015 period, IAEA has approved funding for five Vietnamese projects, focusing on infrastructure construction, nuclear power legislation, and nuclear technology applications in industry, agriculture, health care and the building of the country ‘s two nuclear power plants.
Currently, there are around 30 countries and territories developing nuclear energy around the world, said the IAEA chief, adding that a number of other countries are considering to join the group.