The 9th FNCA Ministerial Level Meeting was held in Manila, the Philippines, November 28, 2008, co-hosted by Cabinet Office of Japan (CAO), Japan Atomic Energy Commission (JAEC) and Department of Science and Technology of the Philippines (DOST), with the ministerial-levels and senior officials in charge of development and utilization of nuclear technology from nine FNCA member countries, Australia, Bangladesh, China, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines and Viet Nam. (Program) (List of Participants)
In Session 1, which was chaired by Dr. Maximus Ongkili of Malaysia, witnessed the delivery of Opening Remarks by Dr. Estrella F. Alabastro, Secretary of the Department of Science of Technology of the Philippines, and Mr. Yoshitake Masuhara, Senior Vice-Minister of the Cabinet Office of Japan, both representing the hosts of the 9th Ministerial Meeting. This was followed by the introduction of the Heads of the Delegations participating in the 9th MM and the rendering by Dr. Alumanda M. dela Rosa, FNCA Coordinator of the Philippines, of the Report from the Senior Officials Meeting, together with the Ministerial Meeting Agenda. After the presentation of the MM Agenda, the same was formally adopted by the Forum.
In Session 2, each of the nine participating countries delivered their Country Report, focusing on their respective activities involving nuclear power and radiation application and highlighting relevant regional and international cooperation in their countries.
In Session 3, Dr. Sueo Machi, FNCA Coordinator of Japan, reported on the results of the 9th FNCA Coordinators Meeting and presented the progress report and annual plan of the individual FNCA projects. The annual plan was eventually agreed upon by the Ministerial Meeting.
Dr. Jun Sugimoto, Chairperson of the 1st Meeting of the 2nd Phase Study Panel, and incumbent Director of the Nuclear Technology and Education Center of JAEA (Japan), then presented the current status of the Human Resource Development (HRD) database. During that 1st panel meeting held in October 2007, it was recommended that information exchange on HRD requirements accompanying the introduction of nuclear power plants will be promoted among the FNCA member countries. Such recommendation was accepted at the 8th FNCA ministerial meeting in December 2007, and it was decided to design and construct a web-based FNCA database containing such HRD information.
Dr. Kunihisa Soda, Commissioner of the Nuclear Safety Commission of Japan and who served as Chairperson of the 2nd Meeting of the 2nd Phase Study Panel for the Development of Nuclear Safety Infrastructure, thereafter reported on the discussion results and recommendations made during the said Meeting of the Study Panel which was held in September 2008.
In Session 4, a Lead Speech was delivered by Mr. Yoshitake Masuhara of Japan, setting off a roundtable discussion on the possibilities of cooperation among FNCA member countries in the area of developing nuclear power infrastructure. Two proposals were raised: one, on intensifying efforts to follow up the results of the FNCA communiqué earlier agreed upon and two, on enhancing utilization of information and experience in the area of infrastructure development. Relative to the latter proposal, a proposition was made to initiate a new phase of the study panel, this time on “Approaches toward Infrastructure Development for Nuclear Power.” The purpose of the panel will be to serve as venue for the sharing of practical information and actual experiences among senior officials and experts in charge of the relevant area, in order to promote both individual country and international cooperative approaches toward the development of nuclear power infrastructure.
In Session 5, a Lead Speech was delivered by Secretary Estrella F. Alabastro of the Philippines which set the tone of discussions on the future scope of the FNCA projects, while highlighting the value of radiation application in the effort to better contribute to the well-being of the people in FNCA countries. The ensuing discussion focused on possible means to strengthen linkages with potential end-users of technologies so that actual application of the Cooperation's products can be further promoted.
In Session 6, Secretary Estrella F. Alabastro proposed a resolution enjoining FNCA member countries to work toward following up the FNCA joint communiqué and toward enhancing cooperation on the promotion of nuclear power and the furtherance of radiation application.
The resolution was met with favor, with the following points also reaching agreement from the Member Countries: a) the implementation of the 11 FNCA projects in the eight various fields, in accordance with the plans proposed by the 9th Coordinators Meeting; b) the conduct of the 10th Anniversary Ministerial Level Meeting in Japan in 2009; c) the conduct of the 10th Coordinators' Meeting in Tokyo, Japan, from March 11 to 13, 2009; and d) the establishment of a new Study Panel of FNCA (the 3rd Study Panel) on nuclear power infrastructure development, hereafter to be known as the “Study Panel on the Approaches Toward Infrastructure Development for Nuclear Power.” The details concerning the new study panel will be taken up at the 10th Coordinators' Meeting.
In Session 7 (Closing Session), the body moved to adopt the Resolution proposed by Secretary Estrella Alabastro and to confirm the summary of the 9th FNCA Ministerial Meeting. The Closing Remarks were then delivered by the Delegation Head of the two co-hosting countries, Japan and the Philippines, after which a Question-and-Answer Session with the press was conducted.