(New York, 27 October 2008)
The Chinese Delegation would like to thank Mr. ElBaradei, Director General of IAEA, for his report on the work of the International Atomic Energy Agency over the past year. We are appreciative of the enormous efforts and important role of the IAEA in promoting peaceful uses of nuclear energy and prevention of proliferation of nuclear weapons.
Over the past year, the Agency has come a long way in promoting the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. The Agency has provided assistance to member states through nuclear power, nuclear applications and technical cooperation programmes to address challenges in the fields of energy supply, food security and environment protection. Positive progress has been registered on this front.
Meanwhile, the Agency has also played a pivotal role in safeguarding the peaceful use of nuclear material and facilities and preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons. China appreciates the positive role of IAEA in facilitating the peaceful resolution of the nuclear issue on Korean Peninsular and Iranian nuclear issue. The Agency has, over the past year, applied safeguards in over 160 countries, and worked to further advance the Additional Protocol process and implement the Integrated Safeguards Framework.
Today, there is strong momentum in international nuclear power development. How to promote peaceful uses of nuclear energy for member states while preventing the proliferation of nuclear weapons is an importance issue which bears on the future orientation of the Agency. China is of the view that the role and function of the Agency should be adequately enhanced on the following scores:
Firstly, it is essential that the expertise of the Agency should be further enhanced so that it could be in a better position to assist member states in establishing their nuclear power and application infrastructure, in accelerating the pace and broadening the scope of the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. Secondly, the Agency should further work to strengthen its nuclear safety regulatory system and continue to assist member state to establish sound and effective nuclear security systems. Thirdly, the Agency should continue to address verification issues in an impartial and balanced manner, and work to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of its safeguards system, so as to further promote the universality and effectiveness of the Additional Protocol.
China has always actively supported and participated in the Agency's technical cooperation programmes in close cooperation with the Agency and the relevant member states. I am happy to recall the very fruitful cooperation on nuclear security between China and the Agency during our preparation for the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. The Agency sent experts to China for consultancy and training missions, and provided China with much-needed nuclear detection equipments. In May, in the aftermath of the devastating earthquake in Wenchuan of Sichuan Province in China, the Agency provided China through its technical cooperation programme with radioactive material detection equipments and relevant training, which played an important role in post-quake searching operations through radioactive sources. The Chinese government wishes to express its sincere thanks to the Agency for all these efforts.
In conclusion, Mr. President, China will, as always, support the Agency, and continue to work with other member states so as to ensure that fresh headway will be made in the Agency's work.
I thank you, Mr. President.