IAEA Technical Assistance and Co-operation Committee (TACC)
Statement by Ms Marina Francis, Alternate Representative of Australia to the IAEA
Agenda Item 2: Technical Cooperation: The Agency's proposed programme for 2023
14 November 2022
Thank you, Chair.
Let me first thank the Director General for his report, Technical Cooperation: The Agency’s Proposed Programme for 2023. I’d also like to thank Deputy Director General Liu for his introductory remarks, and the Secretariat - especially the staff of the Technical Cooperation Department - for their continued efforts to ensure the TC Program responds effectively to Member States’ needs.
Australia has been a leading supporter of the TC Programme, which assists Member States to meet their developmental needs, and achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Australia will continue to contribute to this vital programme, including by paying our TCF target share in full and on time. We call on others to do so likewise.
In addition to our TCF contribution, Australia is pleased to have provided almost $5 million in extrabudgetary funding to the Agency this year – with a significant portion dedicated to TC activities. This is in addition to the vast in-kind contributions we have made, and continue to make, through hosting training programs, fellowships and scientific visits, and providing experts for key projects and missions related to food and agriculture, human health, pollution monitoring, water resource management and nuclear safety to name a few. This is primarily through our involvement in the Regional Cooperative Agreement for Asia and the Pacific - the RCA - which celebrated its 50th anniversary this year. The RCA has delivered extensive developmental outcomes since its inception, and we look forward to serving as chair of the RCA in 2023 and to continuing to contribute to the activities of the organisation.
The continued increase in the participation of women in TC programme activities is critical. The Agency must continue to undertake focused initiatives aimed at attracting and retaining women in nuclear-related fields. This year, Australia made a significant extrabudgetary contribution to the Marie Sklodowska-Curie Fellowship Programme, with some of that contribution earmarked for scholarships for women from Pacific island countries. We also observe with interest the Director General’s recent announcement regarding the Lise Meitner Programme, and look forward to hearing more about this program in due course.
While Australia underlines our strong commitment to the TC Programme, we continue to welcome improved, results-based management and transparency in TC project planning and implementation.
Efficient and effective management of the TC Programme will ensure the Agency delivers the best possible outcomes for Member States.
We encourage the Agency to ensure that the benefits of technical cooperation reach the countries that need them the most.
In closing, please allow me to reaffirm Australia’s unshakeable commitment to the mandate and work of the IAEA, including its role in effectively advancing the attainment of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals through the TC Programme.
With these comments, Australia supports the actions recommended in document GOV/2022/56.