Opening Plenary Session

Opening remarks by Ramzi Jammal at the Seventh Review Meeting for the CNS

Monday, March 27, 2017

Vienna, Austria

Ramzi Jammal
Welcome to the Seventh Review Meeting of the Convention on Nuclear Safety. It is an honour to have been elected as President of this meeting. With the support of the two Vice-Presidents of the Seventh Review Meeting, Mr. Georg Schwarz and Mr. Geoffrey Emi-Reynolds, a significant amount of work has been done in preparation for this meeting. As Contracting Parties, we know the substantial amount of effort it takes to make this review process a success. Now, we need to collectively demonstrate to the world the effectiveness of the CNS in maintaining and improving global nuclear safety.

I would like to welcome Myanmar and Niger our newest Contracting Parties to the Convention. This brings the total number of Contracting Parties to 80. Madagascar has also ratified the Convention and will shortly become a Contracting Party. With more countries engaged in the CNS, we are sending a clear message that worldwide nuclear safety is a priority.

Your commitment to nuclear safety and to the Convention is demonstrated by your presence at this Seventh Review Meeting. This is the only UN convention through which many countries are brought together with nuclear safety as the focus.

I am pleased to announce that all but one Contracting Party submitted its national report for this meeting. This is a first for the Convention, and this again demonstrates our collective commitment to nuclear safety is growing. Attendance at this meeting is also a clear indication that Contracting Parties are taking nuclear safety seriously.

Also, for the first time, countries that have signed the Convention but who have not yet ratified it have been invited to attend the review meeting as observers. I want to thank all the Contracting Parties for their openness to the involvement of observers. Together, we will demonstrate the benefits of participation in the CNS review process. Welcome to all those who have accepted our invitation, and I look forward to seeing you at the closing plenary as well.

It has been two years since the release of the IAEA Director General’s Fukushima Daiichi Accident Report, as well as the adoption of the Vienna Declaration on Nuclear Safety. This review meeting provides a first opportunity for Contracting Parties to discuss both plans and actions to address these critical documents. Our sharing this information highlights the very foundation of improving global nuclear safety – openness and transparency.

Our focus is to ensure nuclear safety for the protection of the public and the environment while maintaining an apolitical orientation. I trust this meeting will prove effective, productive and informative to all participants. I want to remind all participants of the great opportunity that the CNS review meetings provide for us to demonstrate that global nuclear safety - supported by information sharing and transparency - is our number one priority.

As Contracting Parties, we each have a responsibility to the public to maintain and advance nuclear safety. I am honoured to be with you today to fulfill that responsibility.

Thank you!