1995 Review and Extension Conference
of the Parties to the Treaty on
Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons
1 February 1995
Original: ENGLISH

New York, 17 April - 12 May 1995


Background Paper Prepared by the Secretariat of the IAEA


Article IV of the NPT stipulates that,

"1. Nothing in this Treaty shall be interpreted as affecting the inalienable right of all the Parties to the Treaty to develop research, production and use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes without discrimination and in conformity with Articles I and II of this Treaty.

2. All the Parties to the Treaty undertake to facilitate, and have the right to participate in, the fullest possible exchange of equipment, materials and scientific and technological information for the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. Parties to the Treaty in a position to do so shall also co-operate in contributing alone or together with other States or international organizations to the further development of the applications of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, especially in the territories of non-nuclear-weapon States Party to the Treaty, with due consideration for the needs of the developing areas of the world."

While transfer of technology, in this context, also takes place through bilateral and other multilateral channels, the IAEA serves as one of the key international mechanisms for scientific and technical co-operation in the promotion of the peaceful use of nuclear energy and has played and continues to play an important role in the transfer of nuclear techniques to the developing areas of the world.

According to its Statute, the IAEA has pursued the twin and mutually reinforcing goals of promoting the peaceful benefits of atomic energy and verifying that nuclear materials and facilities placed under its safeguards system are used for peaceful purposes.

The IAEA General Conference has on several occasions confirmed its continuing support for an adequate balance between those of the Agency's programmes which aim at making more widely available the benefits of peaceful uses of nuclear energy and those which are designed to ensure that nuclear material is not diverted for military purposes (the safeguards system).

1.1. The Legal Framework

Facilitating the exchange of equipment, materials and scientific and technological information for the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, and facilitating co-operation between Member States for this purpose, as envisaged by Article IV of the NPT, are key statutory functions of the IAEA.

Article III of the IAEA's Statute authorizes the Agency, inter alia:

- "to encourage and assist research on, and development and practical application of, atomic energy for peaceful uses throughout the world; and, if requested to do so, to act as intermediary for the purposes of securing the performance of services or the supplying of materials, equipment, or facilities;"

- "to meet the needs of research on, and development and practical application of, atomic energy for peaceful purposes, including the production of electric power, with due consideration for the needs of the under-developed areas of the world;"

- "to foster the exchange of scientific and technical information on peaceful uses of atomic energy;"

- "to encourage the exchange and training of scientists and experts in the field of peaceful uses of atomic energy."

1.2. Mechanisms For Technology Transfer

Implementation of the above objectives and functions is undertaken by the Department of Technical Co-operation and two technical departments, the Department of Research and Isotopes and the Department of Nuclear Energy and Safety. While technology transfer through technical departments forms part of the Agency's Regular Programme and is financed through the Regular Budget, technical assistance provided by the Department of Technical Co-operation is funded largely from voluntary contributions of Member States.


The major technology transfer activities carried out under the Regular Programme include information exchange through symposia, seminars, conferences and technical committee meetings, co-ordinated research programmes, publications, support services and many other activities of interest to Member States. Examples of such activities are given in Sections 2.1 to 2.5.

2.1. International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

INIS continues to be one of the Agency's principal channels for disseminating scientific and technical information. The system covers virtually every aspect of the peaceful uses of nuclear energy. In 1994, the database of the system contained nearly 1.8 million records and is growing at a rate of almost 80,000 records a year. Over 290,000 documents are stored and can be provided on microfiche.

As can be seen from Figure 1, participation in INIS has steadily increased since 1970. At present, this participation corresponds to 65 developing and 23 industrialized Member States as well as 17 international organizations. Most INIS system products are available to developing countries free of charge or at nominal fees.

Figure 1 Annual growth of INIS membership since 1970.

2.2. Meetings and Publications

The Agency holds some 400 meetings on various topics in nuclear science and technology annually, including 10-14 major conferences, symposia and seminars, as well as a wide range of advisory group, technical committee and consultants' meetings. Most of these meetings deal with nuclear applications and techniques which are of direct benefit to developing countries and are thus in line with the objectives of technology transfer.

For various reasons, but mainly owing to financial constraints, participation in these meetings of scientists and specialists from developing Member States continues to be relatively low. For the period 1990 - 1994 the annual proportion of participants from developing countries at the Agency's major meetings fluctuated between 28% and 36%. The total number of participants attending Agency meetings in 1994 was 2,427, 673 (28%) thereof were from developing countries and 178 (26%) of them received participation grants from the Agency.

Many meetings, projects and programmes of the technical departments result in publications and technical documents which are widely disseminated to Member States. In 1994, developing countries received over 170,000 copies of IAEA publications, including cost free proceedings, technical documents, bulletins, news briefs, etc.

2.3. Centres and Laboratories (Seibersdorf, Monaco, Trieste)

Alone among other international organizations, the IAEA operates its own research and service laboratories, which contribute significantly to the transfer of nuclear technology to Member States.

The Agency's laboratories at its Headquarters in Vienna and at Seibersdorf, near Vienna, provide directly to Member States a diversity of technical services for programmes in physics, chemistry, hydrology, nuclear instrumentation and agriculture to assist developing countries to solve a variety of problems. The services provided in agriculture cover soil fertility, irrigation and crop production; plant breeding and genetics; animal production and health; insect and pest control; and agrochemicals. Three principal mechanisms are used by the laboratories for transferring selected techniques and technologies to national research institutions: training courses, on-the-job training, and laboratory services.

The IAEA Marine Environment Laboratory, Monaco, carries out studies of pollution and radioactivity in the marine environment, collaborating with oceanographic institutes worldwide and undertaking projects in co-operation with other international environmental programmes and institutions combining nuclear and non-nuclear techniques. The Laboratory participates in international experiments, marine pollution assessments and research at the request of Member States. It also conducts training courses and laboratory intercomparison exercises.

The International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), financed jointly by the Italian Government, UNESCO and the Agency, with some additional funds made available by other donors, is an important mechanism for the exchange and transfer of advanced scientific knowledge and skills. The main objectives of the Agency's involvement in these activities are: to foster the growth in developing countries of advanced studies and research in the physical and mathematical sciences, especially at the interface with technology; to provide an international forum for scientists from all countries; and to provide facilities to enable visitors, associates and fellows to conduct original research. The Centre is active in many scientific fields, including fundamental physics, condensed matter physics, mathematics, physics and energy, physics and the environment, physics and the living state, and applied physics and technology.

Over 3,600 scientists participated in research and training activities carried out at the Centre in 1994, of which 55% came from developing countries. The Centre has 441 Associate Members and 376 Federated Institutes in developing countries. The ICTP disseminates a very large volume of scientific information. In 1994, it distributed 45,000 items of scientific literature (journals, proceedings and books) to 500 institutions in 93 developing countries. The administrative responsibility of the Agency for ICTP will be transferred to UNESCO as soon as the tripartite agreement is finally accepted by all parties. But the Agency will still continue to support the Centre technically and financially.

2.4. Research Contract Activities

Through the Research Contract activities, the IAEA unites researchers in developing and industrialized countries in progress toward common research goals. These contracts offer guidance to scientists from the developing world and provide opportunities for scientists in all Member States to communicate freely and exchange information on research activities.

Technology transfer is carried out by placing contracts and agreements with research centres, laboratories, universities and other institutions in Member States to conduct research projects in relation to their scientific programmes. Most of these contracts and agreements are components of Co-ordinated Research Programmes (CRPs) research endeavours planned by the Agency which give groups of scientists the opportunity to co-operate in tackling a common problem. Contracts offered under this programme provide a nominal award, currently averaging about $5,000 per annum.

Figure 2 shows the steady growth of Research Contract activities, financed from the Agency's Regular Budget, since the establishment of the NPT. In the last ten years the Agency has in this way financed research activities totaling $42.7 million from the Regular Budget. During the same period, additional extrabudgetary contributions to the programme totalling $7.5 million have also been received from Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, Sweden and the United States of America.

As an alternative to Research Contracts, which always include financial support, Research Agreements are also concluded with institutes to enable them to participate in the Research Contract Programme. These agreements are similar in nature to the contracts, but do not provide funds to the participating institute.

Research is currently being supported by the Agency under this programme in the broad fields of radioisotope and radiation applications, the protection against ionizing radiation, the conservation of the environment and nuclear fuel cycle technologies. About three quarters of the programme supports research endeavours in applications of nuclear techniques, while a quarter of the activities relate to nuclear power and safety. Research work is currently being carried out under 1950 research contracts and agreements in more than 90 Member States and involves participation in 152 CRPs.

For the transfer of scientific knowledge, 89 Research Co-ordination Meetings (RCMs) were held in 1994 in respect of 150 on-going Co-ordinated Research Programmes. 120 publications have resulted from the 25 CRPs completed and evaluated in 1994, (28 books and 92 scientific articles).

Figure 2 The Research Contract Programme since 1970.

2.5. Examples of Activities within The Agencys Regular Programme with a Large Component of Technology Transfer

Examples of activities within the Agencys Regular Programme with a large component of technology transfer can be found in the Agencys Annual Reports. The following examples of such activities in 1993 have been selected to illustrate the IAEA effort and contribution to the transfer of technology.

In food and agriculture, the use of isotopic tracers in Co-ordinated Research Programmes have led to increased efficiency of phosphorus uptake by crops and in studying the rate of soil erosion; the use of neutron moisture gauges have led to improved water use efficiency in irrigation systems.

A CRP on the radiation induction of mutation in breeding rape seed for oil has led to the release to farmers of three mutant varieties in Bangladesh and China, and in sesame the release of 19 mutant varieties in Egypt and the Republic of Korea. Significant progress has also been made using radiation induced mutations in improving plant architecture and in modifying seed oil quality and content.

Other CRPs completed in agriculture cover a wide variety of livestock species (cattle, sheep, goats, llamas, alpacas, camels and buffaloes) and agroecological zones in Africa, Asia and Latin America. These programmes focused on the use of isotopic methods to define nutritional and reproductive problems for the production of milk, meat and fibre, and on research into ways to overcome constraints in a cost effective manner.

A CRP for Asia and the Pacific, Africa and the Middle East on the application of isotope and geochemical techniques in geothermal exploration was completed. Institutes from 11 countries carried out investigations in low temperature geothermal areas on the Southeast Asia coast (China and Viet Nam) and on the Korean peninsula (Republic of Korea), in medium temperature areas in the Himalayas (India and Pakistan), and in high temperature fields in Iceland, Indonesia, Italy, New Zealand, the Philippines and Turkey. Isotope techniques have helped understand the hydrology of geothermal areas in order to identify the location of the resources and in particular to identify the most suitable sites for drilling the production wells.

In the application of nuclear techniques in the field of human health, an interregional seminar was held in Vienna where information was presented on recent advances in the application of radionuclides in the diagnosis and management of disorders of the kidney and the urinary and gastrointestinal tract. Progress was made through a CRP on optimizing radionuclide based molecular techniques for the diagnosis of tuberculosis and blood borne diseases such as hepatitis, Chagas disease, AIDS and malaria.

In the field of industry, earth sciences and environment, a symposium was held on the application of isotope techniques in studying past and current environmental changes in the hydrosphere and the atmosphere. The symposium demonstrated that isotopes are among the most powerful tools to investigate past environmental and climatic changes and their causes and that these studies could help to formulate hypotheses and predict changes in the 21st century.

The following examples may be given regarding the Agencys Regular Programme activities in recent years in nuclear power related areas.

The Agency convened a meeting in 1993 of international organizations to establish an Inter-Agency project (DECADES) on databases and methodologies for comparative assessment of different energy sources for electricity generation in terms of their impact on environment, health and other relevant parameters. The project is being carried out jointly by nine international organizations (the IAEA, CEC, ESCAP, IBRD, IIASA, OECD/NEA, OPEC, UNIDO and WMO) under the supervision of a Joint Steering Committee of representatives of all the participating organizations. The results will be presented and discussed at a Symposium on Electricity, Health and the Environment, to be held in 1995. This work is also the basis of the Agencys contribution to the activities of the Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and of the United Nations Inter-Agency Committee on Sustainable Development (IACSD).

In 1989, the Agency started activities to investigate the potential of sea water desalination for production of potable water under economic conditions. A report has been prepared containing a review of the most up-to-date of desalination processes and possible coupling schemes with nuclear reactors. At the same time, the IAEA is assisting countries (in particular from North Africa and Saudi Arabia) in feasibility studies on sea water desalination.

A special report, Policy Planning for Nuclear Power: An Overview of the Main Issues and Requirements was published. This document, in non-technical language, reviews political, governmental, economic, financial and technical issues that must be dealt with by a government prior to and during the commitment to a safe, economic and reliable nuclear power programme.

As regards the nuclear fuel cycle, recent activities of particular interest to developing countries are:

Elaboration of documents on uranium exploration and production, including
environmental impact assessments.

Preparation of technical documents on handling, treatment, conditioning and
storage of radioactive waste, with emphasis on quality assurance and
minimizing waste.


The main part of the IAEA's technology transfer to Member States is undertaken through its Technical Co-operation Programme (TC Programme), administered by the Department of Technical Co-operation. This consists of projects requested by Member States and approved by the Board of Governors and covers all geographic regions and all aspects of nuclear energy for power and non-power applications. In 1995, the programme comprises of nearly 1,300 projects in over 80 developing countries. Details of the projects approved for the 1995-96 Programme are given in Annex 1.

In view of the size, scope and nature of the assistance provided, the TC Programme has specific conditions for implementation. Thus within the framework established by the statutory provisions referred to in Section 1.1 above, the delivery of the Agency's technical assistance is regulated by "The Revised Guiding Principles and General Operating Rules to Govern the Provision of Technical Assistance by the International Atomic Energy Agency", approved by the Board of Governors and issued in 1979 [INFCIRC/267]. The provision of the assistance is further regulated by a "Revised Supplementary Agreement Concerning the Provision of Technical Assistance by the International Atomic Energy Agency", which is concluded by the Agency and the recipient Member State. Both documents contain, inter alia, provisions concerning exclusively peaceful use of technical assistance provided through the IAEA TC Programme and the Agencys Safety Standards and Measures applied to such assistance.

Figure 3 shows the percentage of Member States receiving technical assistance in a given year, which have concluded a supplementary agreement with the Agency. The steep increase since 1988 shows the success of the effort made by the Agency to bring almost all recipient countries under this agreement.

Figure 3 The percentage of IAEA Member States receiving technical assistance, that have concluded a Revised Supplementary Agreement (RSA).

After the break-up of the former Soviet Union and some countries in Central and Eastern Europe, a number of newly independent States joined the Agency during 1992-1994. Although these countries had not yet signed the Agreement, the Agency responded immediately to requests for technical assistance in order to address some of the most pressing problems.

The TC Programme comprises projects with individual Member States (national projects), regional projects and interregional projects. Many of the regional projects fall within the framework of regional co-operative agreements to which Member States of the region may choose to be party. The interregional projects cover a range of nuclear applications and supporting activities which are of common interest to a large number of developing Member States worldwide, e.g. radiation protection, waste management, programming and implementation of nuclear-related activities, application of nuclear techniques in industry, hydrology and environmental research, in diagnosis and treatment of diseases common to all countries (cancer, heart diseases), as well as in agricultural research, production and processing. These global projects include some 20 training courses annually, together with 10-12 multi-year projects through which specific advice is provided to Member States in all geographical regions.

Assistance is requested by Member States on the basis of their needs and national priorities. All Member States are entitled to receive assistance; however, TC funds "... should be allocated primarily to meet the needs of developing countries ..." [INFCIRC/267].

The delivery of the TC Programme is facilitated by grouping recipient countries administratively into five regions: Africa, Latin America, East Asia and Pacific, West Asia, and Europe. The countries within a region share many common features ranging from a history of intercountry co-operation to priorities in the application of specific nuclear technologies.

Common interests are also supported by co-operation among these countries through regional activities, which permit better use of resources while supporting inter-country co-operation, in particular Technical Co-operation among Developing Countries (TCDC).

3.1. TC Programme Areas

Projects in the TC Programme can be categorised into about ten programme areas, each reflecting a different area of activity of the Agency. These are: nuclear power; nuclear fuel cycle; radioactive waste management; food and agriculture; human health; industry and earth sciences; physical and chemical sciences; radiation protection; safety of nuclear installations; and direction and support.

Figure 4 shows the proportion of the total annual disbursements in each programme area, over the five-year period from 1990 to 1994, and illustrates the trends and changing directions of the TC Programme. Member States continue to attach high priority to the application of nuclear techniques in food and agriculture, the physical and chemical sciences and industry. These particular programme areas cover a wide range of development sectors and represent a major part of the total programme. Disbursements in the area food and agriculture accounted for over 22% of the total in 1994. Disbursements in the area of physical and chemical sciences ranged between 18% and 25%, while industry and earth sciences maintained an average share of about 15%. This distribution reflects the principal development aims of the TC programme, which is to seek to improve the health, welfare and the quality of life of the populations of IAEA Member States, particularly those of Least Developed Countries (LDCs), as well as to promote economic, scientific and technical development.

Another programme area which shows continued increase since 1990 is human health. Indeed the number of requests for assistance in the utilization of nuclear techniques for the diagnosis of many diseases such as leishmaniasis, Chagas disease, iodine deficiency diseases, sickle cell disease and thalassaemia and treatment by radiation therapy shows the high degree of interest and demand.

For a number of reasons, nuclear power programmes in many countries have been cut back or halted. At the same time there is increased awareness of the needs for nuclear safety and radiation protection and the TC Programme is reflecting the changing priorities by shifting emphasis accordingly. The share of disbursements from the programme in nuclear power and fuel cycle remained stationary or declined slightly, whereas the portion allotted to radiation protection, nuclear safety and radioactive waste management has risen from just under 18% to over 22 %.

Figure 4 The percentage of total annual disbursements in each of the main programme areas of the IAEA.

Direction and support activities have been maintained steadily at around 3% to improve the servicing and co-ordination of Technical Co-operation and thereby strengthening the capacity of Member States to absorb the assistance provided.

3.2. Types of Assistance Provided

The assistance available through the TC Programme is provided mainly through three components: experts, equipment and training (fellowships, scientific visits, training courses), that support the establishment or upgrading of nuclear techniques and facilities. A particularly important area is the provision of support to set up or improve regulatory practices and radiation safety infrastructures as a prerequisite for assistance in certain fields of activity.

Since 1970, under the Agency's TC Programme, over 17,000 scientists and specialists from developing Member States have been awarded fellowships or scientific visits, and more than 18,600 participants have attended training courses. Almost 30,000 qualified experts have been assigned to assist development in Member States in areas where nuclear technology is involved, and over $290 million of equipment and materials have been delivered.

3.3. Funding The TC Programme

Whilst the administrative cost of the technical co-operation programme and the required technical support is fully borne by the regular budget of the IAEA, the assistance actually provided to the recipient countries is financed solely by voluntary contributions from Member States, made directly to the IAEA or through the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

Technical co-operation projects are actually financed from four separate resources:

* The Technical Assistance and Co-operation Fund (TACF)

* Extrabudgetary contributions

* In-kind contributions

* UNDP funds.

The TACF is the mainstay of the TC Programme, accounting for over three quarters of the total resources during the past few years. The bulk of the TACF is derived from voluntary contributions by Member States towards a target established as a result of prior consultations and recommended by the Board to the General Conference for approval by formal resolution. This target, which is now set for three or more years in advance, remained almost stationary during the first decade of the IAEAs existence. Since 1977 it has been increasing, reaching $58.5 million in 1994. Member States are encouraged to pledge their respective share of the target which is calculated essentially according to the rates used in the United Nations system for assessed contributions. The shares, pledges and payments received in 1994 are shown in Annex 2.

The second major resource is extrabudgetary income, made up of cash contributions from Member States in addition to their contributions to the TACF. This money is made available by donor countries to finance specific projects which have been recommended for approval as part of the TC Programme, but which cannot be financed through the TACF owing to insufficient resources, (so called Footnote a/ projects).

A third type of voluntary contribution is assistance in kind, whereby Member States provide expert services, donate equipment, or arrange fellowships, free of charge. Fellowships are of particular value to the TC Programme.

Finally, IAEA acts as executing agency for UNDP projects in areas involving nuclear science and, unfortunately in the last four years, this source of funding of the TC Programme has been minimal.

Figure 5 TC financial resources available by year and by source of funding.

Figure 6 TC financial resources available by year and by source of funding, corrected for
inflation using average annual OECD rates.

The total new resources available to the Agencys TC programme have grown from modest beginnings of about $4 million in 1970 to a peak of over $53 million in 1994, as illustrated in Figure 5, which shows the respective share of the TACF, extrabudgetary and UNDP resources. In terms of the nominal values, a considerable increase in the programme until 1989 can be observed. UNDP funds accounted for more than 40% of available resources in 1975, but have dropped continuously since 1979 to about 4%. Extrabudgetary and in-kind resources combined have fluctuated between 10% and 30% in any given year since 1970.

Figure 6 shows the same information corrected for inflation. It can be seen that the increase of programmable resources in real terms is not as marked as implied when using nominal values. The decrease in UNDP activities since 1980 is also clearly visible. The sharp drop in total resources, both in nominal and real terms in 1992 was due to the devaluation of the currency held by the Agency of a major donor country.

3.4. Technical Co-operation and NPT

In the preparation of the TC Programme, the Agency does not differentiate between NPT and non-NPT Member States. Projects are assessed exclusively in terms of technical and practical feasibility, national development priorities and long term advantages to end-users. This selection process is in accordance with the conditions for participating in the TC Programme as set out in INFCIRC/267.

What are the consequences of this policy? Figure 7 to Figure 9 shows the results of a survey undertaken for TC and Research Contract activities.

Figure 7 shows the disbursements from the TACF to Member States according to NPT status for each year since 1985. The proportion of disbursements from the TACF to non-NPT Member States has remained relatively constant, fluctuating between 16% and 20%.

The situation for extrabudgetary funding is quite different. As already stated, the value of projects approved for funding exceeds the resources available through TACF. Member States are then notified of the remaining projects as candidates for extrabudgetary support. The donor countries are free to choose the projects they are prepared to finance. Here, a clear preference is shown by donors for those in Member States party to NPT: indeed, certain Member States specifically express this preference during Board Meetings and when selecting projects to fund.

Figure 8 illustrates this situation. The proportion of disbursements from extrabudgetary funds to non-NPT Member States is much less, fluctuating between 2% and 5%.

Figure 9 shows the distribution by NPT status of Research Contract awards funded by the Regular Programme, for the five-year period 1990 to 1994.

Figure 7 Disbursements from the TACF to IAEA Member States party and non-party to NPT.

Figure 8 Extrabudgetary disbursements to IAEA Member States party and non-party to NPT.

Figure 9 Research contract awards to IAEA Member States party and non-party to NPT.


4.1. Diversity of Conditions and Needs

In considering the IAEAs technical co-operation activities, it should be noted that developing Member States differ widely in terms of overall economic development, and, in particular, advancement in nuclear science and technology.

Seventeen of the 32 nations operating or constructing nuclear power plants are developing countries. Some of them also possess nuclear fuel cycle technology and facilities, including such sophisticated techniques as uranium enrichment, reactor fuel fabrication, spent fuel reprocessing and heavy water production. Some of these countries are already exporting certain nuclear technologies and materials and are providing bilateral assistance to other States in research, development and application of nuclear technologies. Around five other developing countries are planning to embark on nuclear power programmes in the near future.

Thirty-eight developing Member States operate 85 research reactors of various types and capacities. Nuclear scientific and technological infrastructures have been formed around the reactors, enabling these countries to conduct basic and applied research and development, radioisotope and radiopharmaceutical production, and other activities related to the use of research reactors.

Most developing Member States have gained experience in the application of isotopes and radiation in a variety of fields, including agriculture, medicine, industry and hydrology, and may be relatively advanced in some of these areas. At the same time there are Member States, particularly among LDCs, where nuclear activities consist mainly in the introduction of limited nuclear techniques and related training.

The widely differing technical assistance needs and priorities of both individual Member States as well as different groups of Member States, make the Agency's technical co-operation activities highly diverse and prevent concentration on a limited number of applications and techniques.

One particular trend that has emerged in the last years is end-user orientation. Whereas, previously, techniques were mostly transferred to specialist groups working at research establishments of national atomic energy commissions, training in and equipment for specific technologies are now increasingly delivered to the sectors concerned. For example, the end-users of medical diagnostic techniques are the hospital staff; the end-users of food irradiation technology are farmers co-operatives and the food industry; the end users of isotopes in hydrology are the water management institutions.

4.2. Increased Intercountry Co-operation

Three major forms of intercountry technical co-operation activities are used by the Agency: regional co-operative agreements, with the principal aim of promoting and co-ordinating co-operative research, development and training projects in a wide range of nuclear applications and techniques; regional projects each of which deals with one specific nuclear technique or nuclear energy related activity; and interregional projects, normally addressing problems common to Member States in several geographical regions. The regional technical co-operation activities that started to be actively incorporated into the Agency's TC Programme in the late 1970s are an effective mechanism that permits problems common to several countries in one region to be addressed with an intensity of support that could not be provided to each country individually. Of no less importance is the fact that it promotes and facilitates Technical Co-operation among Developing Countries (TCDC).

At present there are three regional co-operative agreements: AFRA (Africa Regional Co-operative Agreement for Research, Development and Training); ARCAL (Regional Co-operative Agreement for the Development of Nuclear Science and Technology in Latin America); and RCA (Regional Co-operative Agreement for Research, Development and Training Related to Nuclear Science and Technology) for East Asia and the Pacific Region. Regional membership has grown steadily and today 54 IAEA Member States are participating in these agreements.

These regional co-operative agreements are concluded under the auspices of the IAEA, which also acts as secretariat and co-ordinator in the formulation and establishment of projects. In this respect the Agency fulfills three main functions: co-ordination, administration and scientific and technical support.

More than 30 multi-year regional projects are in operation, and about 40 regional training activities are carried out annually in addition to the activities within the regional co-operative agreements. The exact subjects covered by these projects and training courses reflect the priorities of the different regions. In 1995, more than 22% of the total resources available for the TC Programme are allocated to regional activities.

The contribution of developing Member States to regional technical co-operation activities is increasing. These countries host the training events and in the case of Asia and Latin America provide most of the experts for the implementation of these agreements.

The expansion of the application of nuclear techniques in developing Member States is expected to lead to an increasing trend towards regional co-operation and TCDC activities.

4.3. Increased Attention to Radiation Protection, Nuclear Safety and Radioactive Waste Management

Under its Statute, the Agency is authorized to establish or adopt standards of safety for the protection of health, life and property and to provide for their application to assisted operations. The Agency may also, if so requested, provide for the application of such standards to operations under bilateral or multilateral arrangements or to a State's own activities in the field of atomic energy. To enable the Agency to carry out these functions, the Statute provides that it shall have certain rights and responsibilities with respect to any assistance provided.

To implement these statutory provisions, The Agency's Safety Standards and Measures [INFCIRC/18 Rev.1] have been approved by the Board of Governors and are mandatory for the Agency's own operations and for Agency-assisted operations. In order to be able to apply the Standards effectively, each country must have in place a radiation safety infrastructure that includes:

* A legal framework for licensing or otherwise controlling practices involving exposure to radiation and radioactive substances;

* Provision of inspection and other compliance control activities;

* Technical capabilities to provide services such as radiation monitoring and emergency response;

* Qualified personnel to assess radiation protection programmes.

Over the years, the Agency has been assisting its developing Member States in establishing and strengthening their radiation safety (including waste management) infrastructures. A range of ways and means has been developed and is being used for this purpose, including technical meetings, provision of a large body of safety standards and guides, advisory missions, individual and group training, expert services and equipment. Most of these have been provided through the TC Programme: safety related activities consisting of projects in the fields of radioactive waste management, radiation protection and the safety of nuclear installations accounted for 20% of all TC disbursements in 1994, a share that has been slowly but steadily increasing from year to year.

In spite of these efforts, the radiation safety situation in many developing Member States still needs to be improved. A few countries have not yet established the appropriate infrastructure. In several other countries, although a minimum infrastructure is formally in place, the actual level of radiation safety is inadequate, mainly resulting from a lack of national support for such activities. Radiation safety control mechanisms are deemed inadequate in more than one third of the IAEA's developing Member States. This situation, as monitored by the Agency, is shown in Table 1.


Percentage of the IAEA Developing Member States
lacking some components of Radiation Protection Infrastructure






General radiation protection law





Regulation/codes of practice





Licensing and inspection





Personnel monitoring





Emergency preparedness plans





Food contamination control





*Not monitored in 1984

The continuing rapid growth in most developing countries in the application of nuclear techniques in agriculture, medicine, hydrology, industry, environmental surveillance and research makes the problem of radiation safety and waste management increasingly acute, requiring further enhancement of the Agency's co-operation and assistance in this direction. Therefore, in addition to large numbers of ongoing TC projects dealing with radiation safety, two interregional model projects were approved by the Board of Governors in 1993 that aim to support the upgrading of national infrastructures in radiation protection and waste management in a number of Member States to appropriate levels and standards.


Since the majority of IAEA Member States are party to NPT, it is natural that their interests and requirements are specifically reflected in the Agency's medium term plans and biennial programmes. In preparing these plans and programmes, the present situation and expected developments in the peaceful uses of atomic energy are assessed.

The growing world population and ever increasing industrialization, will require greater energy usage, particularly electricity, in the years ahead. Extensive analysis of energy options will be required at the national, regional and global levels, and important energy policy decisions are likely to be made. As there is no global intergovernmental energy organization, the IAEA will stimulate and, where necessary, co-ordinate the international effort required to assess the benefits and problems of various power options including nuclear energy.

When considering the Agency's role in contributing to the transfer of nuclear power and fuel cycle technology, it should be recognized that the nuclear industry has made great progress in commercializing many technologies and that new suppliers have appeared on the market, some of them in developing countries. The IAEAs future role should be to find more ways of supporting and assisting buyers and to remove obstacles to free choice. The Agency's traditional function of providing a forum for information exchange in this area may also expand if demand for nuclear power increases and if this increase is followed by expanded development programmes in the field of power reactor technology and design. The Agency should also be ready to respond to requests for assistance from developing countries that are considering the nuclear option, particularly in the area of manpower training.

Another effect of the increasing world population, with a major part living in developing areas, will be the need for greater supplies of food and fresh water, better health care and more access to industrial goods. Nuclear methods that can lead to improvements in the production and preservation of food, in health care, in industrial production and in the provision of fresh water supplies are increasing in number. They are often competitive with other methods --- and in some cases they are the only methods available. The scope for the exchange of experience in using nuclear techniques and for transferring them to developing countries is therefore expanding. Non-power applications of nuclear energy will remain the area of technology transfer of greatest interest for a large number of Member States.

The Agency's task in the medium term will almost invariably be to create or strengthen capabilities at the national level, primarily through the TC Programme. Achieving this goal will require greater precision in identifying those areas where assistance will have the most impact. High priority will continue to be given to nuclear safety, radiation protection and waste management, to establish the minimum infrastructure to allow further expansion of the application of nuclear techniques in the various sectors of national economies.

On the basis of the above assessment and forecasts, three overall objectives were formulated for the Agency's medium term activities. Two of these objectives are particularly relevant to discussions at the 1990 NPT Review Conference on Article IV of the Treaty and are described below.

5.1. Enhancing Technical Co-operation

The objective is to enhance the transfer of nuclear technology and know-how to developing countries, specifically:

(a) To ensure, through increased interaction with the responsible governmental authorities, that the Agency's technology transfer activities are in line with national development plans. The aim of Agency assistance will be to strengthen the relevant national infrastructures so that they become self-supporting. Manpower development, quality control services and maintenance of nuclear instrumentation will receive more attention under this strategy. In view of the important role of the TC Programme in achieving these objectives, the traditional means and procedures for technology transfer are being reviewed to ensure delivery of a high quality programme.

(b) To help establish and strengthen national nuclear safety, radiation protection and waste management systems as a prerequisite for the development of nuclear energy programmes, mainly through the provision of training and advice.

(c) To give priority, when selecting areas for co-operation, to provision of assistance in the transfer of technology to areas involving basic human needs, such as food and water resources, health, and energy supply, and to the transfer of techniques contributing to environmental protection and sustainable development.

(d) To promote only those nuclear techniques in developing countries which have a clear advantage over other techniques, to this end, comparing nuclear and non-nuclear techniques, taking into account the conditions prevailing in the recipient countries.

(e) To co-operate with the relevant international organizations in establishing appropriate databases and systematically analysing the economic, health, environmental and climatic impacts of various energy options; in particular to contribute analyses and data concerning nuclear power to such studies and to make the results of this work widely available to experts in Member States.

(f) To promote the exchange of information and international discussions with interested Member States, and such parties as World Association of Nuclear Operators (WANO) and international financial institutions, with the aim of developing new schemes for financing, constructing and operating nuclear power plants in developing countries.

(g) To perform global analyses and strategic studies of selected aspects of nuclear power and the fuel cycle, including assurance of supply.

5.2. Achieving and Maintaining a High Level of Nuclear Safety

The objective is to provide international leadership and assistance in achieving and maintaining a high level of nuclear safety worldwide and minimizing the environmental impact of all types of peaceful nuclear facilities and applications, specifically:

(a) To provide international leadership and assistance to national nuclear safety authorities, especially to governmental nuclear regulatory bodies, with a view to detecting and correcting safety deficiencies in operating nuclear facilities and the prevention of accidents. To this end:

To develop and implement a more thorough and transparent system to overview the safety of all operating nuclear installations;

To develop a common basis for judging the acceptable level of safety of all operating nuclear power plants built to past safety standards, with direct assistance provided to Member States in performing periodical reviews of such plants and in assessing and monitoring the effects of ageing on safety.

(b) To co-ordinate the efforts of international and national bodies in reaching a consensus on safety principles for the design of future nuclear power plants.

(c) To take the lead in developing an international technical consensus on the acceptability of methods for the management and disposal of nuclear waste of all kinds, and to help gain public confidence in these matters.

(d) To provide expanded international guidance and assistance to national nuclear safety authorities to ensure the safety of research reactors, spent fuel management facilities and installations using radiation sources, with special attention to the larger research reactors and irradiation facilities.

(e) To establish a harmonized international approach to all aspects of nuclear safety, including the incorporation of the recommendations of the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) into the Agency's standards and guides.


The Technical Co-operation Programme of the Agency must deal with several new challenges arising from the increased diversity and complexity of nuclear techniques and technology, and the rapid growth of the needs of developing countries for more sophisticated tools to solve the difficult social and economic problems they face.

6.1. The Environment and Sustainable Development

A number of problems identified by the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992 and summarized as Agenda 21" under the broad concept of "sustainable development", fall within the Agency's mandate. In a paper issued in September 1993 (Annex 3), the Agency described areas where its on-going activities directly support "Agenda 21" and indicated other areas where, if additional resources could be found, new initiatives could be undertaken. The paper is being updated.

Promoting the safe development of nuclear energy as a source of electric power free from carbon dioxide emissions, and the environmentally sound management of radioactive wastes, are areas where the competence of IAEA is widely recognized. Less well known but even more important for the majority of developing countries, is the use of nuclear techniques for sustainable development applied in food and agriculture, health, hydrology, industry, pollution and climatic investigation.

For example, environmentally sustainable food production is effectively assisted through the application of nuclear techniques in: mutation breeding of food crops; in reducing negative environmental impact by optimization of fertilizer usage through the investigation of nutrient uptake in crops; and in non-polluting control and eradication of insect pests affecting many crops, fruits and livestock.

The Agency has been promoting nuclear related techniques that minimize or even eliminate the environmental impact of certain industrial activities: Radiation sterilization of medical products has replaced earlier processes that used highly toxic gases which could be released to the atmosphere; Electron-beam processing technology is being developed and applied to flue gases of fossil fuel-burning plants to reduce emissions of sulphur dioxide and nitrogen oxides, gases associated with acid-rain.

Ensuring the maximum effectiveness of the Agency activities in supporting the objectives of "Agenda 21" requires close co-operation with other international organizations that have sectoral responsibilities. IAEA is thus working together with the UN and other agencies through the Inter-Agency Committee on Sustainable Development established by the Administrative Committee on Coordination.

6.2. New Member States and their Needs

Following the political and economic changes in Central and Eastern Europe and Former Soviet Union, several newly independent countries have joined the Agency and others are taking the necessary steps to that effect. Many face major problems arising from past programmes in nuclear power utilization and from the application of nuclear techniques in general. Technical assistance is needed to rebuild infrastructures, establish regulatory bodies, train manpower, and support implementation of remedial measures to upgrade nuclear facilities to modern operational and safety standards, while bringing environmental problems under control. As a basis for these activities, the countries concerned need to establish internationally proven regulatory practices relating to the licensing, control and inspection of their nuclear facilities. They also need to prepare for decommissioning of a number of these facilities in the future.

It must be recognized that certain radiation protection and nuclear safety issues in these countries deriving from past and existing nuclear activities, pose considerable problems. These will need to be tackled in ways that, in many cases, have yet to be determined.

Several initiatives have been undertaken by international organizations to address these problems, but more needs to be accomplished. A joint UNDP-IAEA forum to foster information exchange and to seek technical support and funding, was held in Vienna in 1993 and attended by Ministers and senior officials of the countries concerned. As a follow up, fact finding missions were fielded to several former Soviet Union States to gather technical information and evaluate requirements, including manpower development needs. Apart from raising awareness of the needs and problems, it is highly desirable that the required resources should be forthcoming. So far however, funds for necessary remedial actions have yet to be secured. It is believed that the Agency's experience in seeking and gaining international support for such activities will play a major role in solving the problems that are being identified a role that will continue in some cases for at least a decade. In view of urgent need to take action, the Agency has begun under its 1995-1996 TC Programme, a $4 million regional activity to assist in the implementation of safety improvements in Russian designed nuclear power plants and to strengthen nuclear safety and radioactive waste management infrastructure in the countries concerned.

6.3. Impact of Technical Co-operation

A major challenge for the Agency and the Member States involved in the TC Programme is to maximize the impact of individual projects at the country level. Impact can be reasonably assessed only in terms of some measurable factor of achievement, for example a higher yield of food crops, better product quality using non-destructive testing techniques, or better public health because of improvements in and increased use of nuclear techniques for diagnosis and treatment.

All these factors depend on the continued use of the technology or techniques by the country after the Agency input has been delivered. Sustainability is created at the national level through for example the absorptive capacity for a technique, a stable manpower situation and continued financial support. However, the prime factor is the perception at government level of the importance of the technology or technique in terms of national development goals and priorities.

A start was made in 1991 by sending Country Programme Review Missions upon request to Member States to help them define their national programme of technical co-operation with the Agency. Between 1991 and 1994, nineteen such missions were fielded. These missions help the government select meaningful technical co-operation inputs in line with its national development plans and priorities, by ensuring project "relevance". It is only by creating government awareness of the relative values of nuclear technologies, and their potential impact on achieving national development goals, that national commitment can be assured. Such assurance is essential if Agency inputs are not to support activities that are of limited or no importance in the overall national or sectoral priorities as perceived by the government, and which would therefore cease if Agency support was withdrawn.. When a request is received for assistance in the design of a specific project, the Agency is prepared to undertake Pre-Project Missions. This mechanism appears to be effective in assisting Member States to maximize the relevance, feasibility and hence the benefits, of the proposed project with the Agency.

As recommended by the Technical Co-operation Policy Review Seminar held in September 1994, in addition to the aforementioned programming assistance, the Agency will gradually establish a Country Programme Framework for its technical co-operation with each recipient Member State. This framework, covering a period of 4-6 years, would be established in close co-operation with - and with final endorsement of - the country concerned and would show the place that nuclear applications have in various sectors, the part they are expected to play in the socio-economic development of the country and key activities through which the Agency assistance would play an optimal role in reaching development objectives.

6.4. Advanced Technologies and Techniques

For over three decades, the IAEA technical co-operation activities have been geared to establishing and strengthening national infrastructures, to enable developing Member States to use nuclear techniques in various areas of research and applications. With Agency assistance, many recipient countries made significant progress in this respect by the early 1990s. Nuclear research laboratories or groups had been established in many research institutions and scientific centres; large numbers of local scientists and specialists had obtained nuclear related knowledge and skills through a wide range of training opportunities (fellowships, training courses, expert services); and nuclear regulatory and administrative systems had been established in most developing Member States.

However, as countries achieve higher levels of development, with growing proportions of their societies enjoying the benefits, their needs will increase in all areas, including science and technology. Indeed, many developing Member States having been involved in technical co-operation with the Agency for several years have reached high levels of sophistication in the application of nuclear techniques. Therefore, new projects for continued national development have become more advanced, more complex, and larger in terms of both implementation and funding.

For example, requests are increasing for assistance in establishing radioisotope production facilities (research reactors or cyclotrons), or in support of power reactor maintenance and safety activities (probabilistic safety analysis training) and environmental monitoring and remediation programmes (nuclear analytical techniques, radioactive tracer techniques, removal of SO2 and NOX from flue gas emissions).

Implementation of such large and complex projects requires not only serious, long term commitment from both the IAEA and the recipient country, but also, in many cases, complementary bilateral co-operation.

6.5. Public Acceptance of Nuclear Technology

In view of public sensitivity towards the acceptance of nuclear power and the application of nuclear techniques in such areas as agriculture, food preservation and health, the Agency will need to continue wider dissemination of information on the various aspects of nuclear applications. Acceptance is based on the publics perception of risk and necessity. For example, there are rarely objections to medical diagnosis or treatment of cancer using nuclear techniques and radiation, in contrast to frequent opposition to nuclear power for electricity generation or the irradiation of foodstuffs to improve food safety.

The issue of public acceptance, however, must be primarily addressed at the national level with due participation of national atomic energy commissions or their equivalents, as well as sectoral ministries, government departments concerned, and the media. It remains for the Member States to determine whether and to what extent the IAEA should contribute factual material to a national discussion on nuclear technology and applications.


The IAEA is recognized by most governments as an independent source of advice and assistance, serving as a clearinghouse for information on all aspects of nuclear technology, including regulatory and radiation protection and safety issues. Furthermore, it is accepted as an "honest broker" between Member States wishing to collaborate either through Agency mechanisms or bilaterally with Agency support.

The application of nuclear techniques in areas involving basic human needs, radiation protection, nuclear safety, radioactive waste management, environmental protection and sustainable development, are major issues drawing particular attention from the Agency and its Member States.

To meet the many and diverse challenges, two courses of action are deemed necessary. The first is to review and redirect technical co-operation to ensure that technology transfer is achieved. The second is to ensure that the necessary financial resources are available at the level required to respond to the genuine needs of Member States once priorities have been carefully set and agreed by the Agency and the States concerned.

7.1. Redirection of Technical Co-operation Activities

Agency assistance has been effective in establishing and strengthening national infrastructures to enable Member States to exploit nuclear techniques. Each country builds upon this foundation its future programme of peaceful applications of atomic energy. The prime responsibility for utilizing the infrastructure created lies with the individual Member States.

Indeed, proven government commitment, a valid project objective and a clear benefit to an identified end-user are the primary considerations when projects are being appraised for inclusion in the TC Programme.

In view of these factors, the Agency is seeking to ensure that its technical co-operation projects are in line with the Member States' national development plans, are of a practical nature, are oriented towards the end-user, and are intended to have a significant impact on the development of the countries concerned. Special emphasis is being placed on projects which combine all of the above features. They are identified as model projects and are intended to serve as beacons for the direction in which the TC Programme is gradually moving.

This redirection of TC activities has enabled the IAEA to intensify its contacts with many national and multilateral funding organisations with a view to demonstrate that the Agency not only provides technical assistance but is becoming more and more a partner in development, and to mobilize on this basis additional resources for its TC Programme.

Intensive discussions concerning a gradual redirection of technical co-operation activities have stimulated efforts within the Agency towards more rational planning and implementation of individual projects and programmes. It has been proposed to introduce the concept of integrated handling of all forms of technical co-operation (national, regional, and interregional) in one area of nuclear application (e.g. food production), or nuclear-related activity (e.g. radiation protection). For projects of similar scientific content and of recurrent nature, the establishment of standard technical assistance packages which might include experts, training courses, fellowships and equipment is also being considered.

7.2. Meeting The Needs of Member States

What does this changing pattern mean in terms of funding the Agencys technical co-operation activities? Surprisingly, the additional resources required are remarkably small in relation to the importance and magnitude of the tasks ahead. The historical evolution of the funding of the TC Programme since the establishment of NPT, shows a steady growth of resources but also a significant shortfall over the past 10 years. In the last five years the delivery has fluctuated around a rather constant value, some $40 million per year, reflecting the various influences from both donors and recipient Member States.

Figure 10 shows the situation in respect of pledges towards and income from the TACF target for the years 1970 to 1994. In relation to the annual target for contributions approved by the IAEA General Conference, Member states are encouraged to pledge their full respective targets. However, not all pledge and pay according to their share . For example in 1994, of the 123 countries listed in
Annex 2, only 33 pledged their whole target, 24 pledged less than full target and 66 (or 54% of all Member States) made no pledge whatsoever. Between 1973 and 1984, pledges always exceeded 90% of the target and the resulting income was nearly 100% of the target or higher. After 1984, pledges declined sharply from nearly 90% in 1985 to around 71% in 1992.

The drop in total income was even more dramatic. The lowest point registered was in 1992, when only 65.1% of the target was reached mainly due to significant losses on exchange. When inflation is taken into account, then the negative trend experienced in the TACF resources is even more pronounced. The result is that since 1984, the actual annual increases in the approved targets for contributions, have been virtually cancelled out by the relative drop in pledges and the total income

Figure 11 shows the approved TC Programme as a proportion of the value of total requests for technical assistance by Member States (represented by the 100% line), for the period 1987 to 1994. All such requests undergo appraisal by the Agency and a TC programme is proposed by the Secretariat to the Board for approval (shaded area). The portion indicated as Core Programme, represents that part of the programme in a given year that could be funded by the TACF. It should be noted that the core programme represents only about 50% to 60% of the initial demands coming from developing Member States. The extrabudgetary portion corresponds to the additional resources necessary to cover the total approved programme. This portion is divided into two parts; the funded part corresponds to projects for which extrabudgetary resources were actually received; the part not funded, represents projects which could not be implemented due to lack of financing. The remaining part that could not be recommended includes requests which: are not considered technically sound; could be accommodated within similar proposals or ongoing assistance; are premature due to inadequate infrastructure, project planning or preparation; are outside of the Agencys purview, are not sufficiently oriented towards development objectives, or do not demonstrate any obvious technology transfer.

Figure 10 The pattern of pledges and income compared with target amounts for the IAEA Technical Assistance and Co-operation Fund.

Figure 11 The TC Programme divided into a core component financed by the TAC Fund, and extrabudgetary component (financed and not financed), shown as a proportion of the total request for technical assistance by Member States. All values are averaged over two year programming periods. The funded portion for 1995-96 is estimated.

From this figure it can be concluded that, during the period considered, no funds were available to finance between 6% and 20% of the approved TC Programme and this part could not therefore be implemented. If projected to the present programme cycle (1995-96) it means that about $13-20 million of resources each year in addition to the expected income would be required for the implementation of the entire approved programme. It will be seen from Figure 10 that this approximately amounts to the gap between the target proposed for 1994 and the actual income realised. Therefore if the pledges and payments were made according to the target, most of the approved TC programme at the present level could be funded.


The IAEA undertakes a multitude of activities which are in line with Article IV of the NPT, and has substantially contributed to the promotion of nuclear energy and its applications in developing Member States. In fact, for most of these countries, Agency-supported projects provided key inputs to the establishment of national infrastructures required for the introduction of nuclear techniques in such areas of basic human needs as; food production and supply, public health, industry and environment, as well as electricity generation and issues related to nuclear and radiation safety.

Basic policy and mechanisms for nuclear technology transfer to developing Member States have evolved over the years, enabling the Agency to perform its activities in an efficient manner. In particular, the following is worth mentioning:

Transfer of technology and techniques has always ranked highly among the main objectives of the Agency, which also include the establishment of health and safety standards, the development and implementation of safeguards and extend to such matters, as, for example, the establishment of guidelines and an international convention relating to the physical protection of nuclear materials. As a result, there has been a growth of resources and an extensive involvement of the Agencys overall efforts in technology transfer activities, both under the TC Programme and the Regular Programme..

The Agency has a well-established mechanism for considering policy matters, guarantees against nuclear proliferation, and safety and operational issues related to technical co-operation. This includes not only the provisions described in section 3, but also; regular sessions of the Policy Making Organs, the Technical Assistance and Co-operation Committee (TACC), periodic TC Policy Review Seminars, ad-hoc advisory groups of external consultants, and systematic internal evaluation of project performance to enable necessary in-depth reviews to be undertaken. By these means, the Agency is able to identify, generally in good time, the modifications and technical adjustments necessary to maintain the efficiency and quality of its assistance.

Technical co-operation plays an important role in tune with the process of development of recipient Member States. In view of its structure, experience and control mechanisms against nuclear proliferation, the IAEA provides a unique instrument for the furtherance of the utilization of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes, as envisaged under Article IV of the NPT.

There is scope for the expansion of technology transfer activities. Much could be done in spreading the benefits of nuclear energy for sustainable development, environmental protection, human health and generally for improving the quality of life. Opportunities exist and projects have been prepared. The only constraint is the level of resources, which do not match demand.


Adjusted programme - the total value of all technical co-operation activities approved for a given calendar year plus all approved assistance brought forward from previous years but not yet implemented.

Assistance-in-kind.-non-cash contributions made by Member States in support of specific projects or activities, such as the direct provision of equipment, experts and hosting of training.

Disbursements - actual cash outlays for goods provided and services rendered.

Earmarkings - amounts allotted for funding approved assistance awaiting implementation.

Extrabudgetary funds - funds provided by Member States for financing specific projects or activities. These funds are separate from voluntary contributions to the Technical Assistance and Co-operation Fund (TACF).

Footnote a/ projects - projects approved by the Board for which no immediate funds are available.

Funds in trust - funds received from Member States to finance assistance for themselves.

Implementation - the volume of funds obligated (new obligations) in a given period.

Implementation rate - a ratio obtained by dividing implementation by the adjusted programme (expressed as a percentage).

Technical Assistance and Co-operation Fund (TACF) - at present, the main fund for the financing of the Agencys technical co-operation activities; it is supported by voluntary contributions from Member States.

UNDP Programme - projects executed by the Agency on behalf of the United nations Development Programme and its associated funds, including United Nations Fund for Science and Technology for Development (UNFSTD).