APLN Discussion Paper – The Concept of an Asia-Pacific Nuclear Energy Community

AUTHOR
Asia-Pacific Leadership Network for Nuclear Non-Proliferation and Disarmament
DATE
February 18, 2013
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The following is a summary. Click on the adjacent link to download the full briefing.

While it is for each country to decide whether to use nuclear energy, it is essential to ensure that the highest standards of non-proliferation, safety and security are maintained.

To this end, APLN believes that the concept of an Asia-Pacific nuclear energy community merits study and discussion by governments, industry, academia, civil society and others, and is releasing this paper to encourage consideration of this concept.

An Asia-Pacific nuclear energy community could add value by enabling and encouraging high-level consultation on nuclear plans and programs; regional cooperation and promotion of best practice in safeguards, security and safety; and collaborative arrangements for energy security and fuel cycle management, including operation of sensitive stages of the fuel cycle.

It could also ensure transparency and build confidence in nuclear programs in the region. For example, the community could provide assurance to states with nuclear programs, and their publics – as well as neighbouring states – that they are in fact meeting best practice in nuclear safety and security. Of particular concern to APLN, the community could take effective action to address non-proliferation and disarmament objectives.

Compared with the specialised institutions that exist now, an Asia-Pacific nuclear energy community would be more high-level, both in subject matter − e.g. security of supply, fuel cycle management, safety and security assurances − and in participation, involving government leaders as well as ministers.

A nuclear energy community could also complement other steps being taken towards greater regional integration, and could become an important building block in this process.

 

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