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Framework needed for Vietnam nuclear plans

Da Lat research reactor in Vietnam. / Viet Nam News

Publication Date : 19-07-2013

 

The Vietnamese government needs to set up a national nuclear regulatory agency right away, to ensure the country's nuclear project gets underway as well as keeping in line with international rules and guidance that the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) demands.

This suggestion was made yesterday by international and domestic nuclear specialists from IAEA, Russia, Japan, the US, Thailand and Bulgaria in the first meeting to discuss the issue, held in northern Vietnam's Hai Phong City.

The Head of the Department for Nuclear and Radiation Safety at the Ministry of Science and Technology, Vuong Huu Tan, confirmed that the legal regulations and a national nuclear regulatory agency will ensure that a nuclear power programme gets of the ground, especially the construction of the Ninh Thuan Nuclear Power Plant.

The necessary legislation has already been drawn up, according to each phase of the project, he said.

The department will be upgraded to become the National Nuclear Regulatory Agency whose tasks and operations will be set up in December after being approved by the prime minister of Vietnam.

According to experts, the changes and updates to the legal regulations on nuclear power are necessary to meet the IAEA's current safety requirements, enabling the construction of the Ninh Thuan nuclear power plant.

The technical criteria will help to introduce the new legislation during every phase of the project, they said.

They suggested that the construction of the nuclear power plant should be regulated by not only the Law on Nuclear Energy but also by the laws on electricity, investment, construction and environmental construction.

Therefore these agencies should be included when the new regulations on nuclear power are drafted, to avoid inconsistencies and overlaps with the current ones, they said.

The experts also put forward suggestions as to the location of the plant, the ability to appraise nuclear safety, radiation safety, strategies to cope with radiation leaks and personnel training.

 

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