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TOKYO, Japan – U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman and Japan's Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs Shinsuke Sugiyama co-chaired the third meeting of the U.S.-Japan Bilateral Commission on Civil Nuclear Cooperation in Tokyo, Japan, this week. The meeting included participants from a wide range of U.S. government agencies, including the Departments of Energy, State, Commerce, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, as well as the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The Japanese agencies represented included the Ministries of Foreign Affairs; Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology; Economy, Trade and Industry; and Environment, as well as the Nuclear Regulation Authority and the Japan Atomic Energy Agency.
The Bilateral Commission, launched at the U.S.-Japan summit at the White House in April 2012, is a senior-level forum to foster a comprehensive strategic dialogue and joint activities related to the safe and secure use of civil nuclear energy. Discussions also cover decommissioning and decontamination efforts at the Tokyo Electric Power Company’s (TEPCO) Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Station.
“These meetings contribute significantly to our nuclear energy cooperation with Japan,” said Deputy Secretary Poneman. “The Bilateral Commission permits agencies in both our governments to build upon long-standing efforts in civil nuclear cooperation and nonproliferation to expand our work to include nuclear safety, environmental management, and emergency response."
Deputy Secretary Poneman also welcomed Japan's reaffirmed commitment to support a global nuclear liability regime by moving to join the Convention on Supplemental Compensation for Nuclear Damage, and its expressed intent to submit the CSC to the Diet in 2014.
The Bilateral Commission's five working groups also continue to make good progress. For example, DOE committed to continue substantial technical exchanges on Fukushima cleanup activities. The U.S. government will also continue supporting Japanese efforts to enhance and implement international nuclear safety, security and emergency management practices.
The Bilateral Commission previously met in November 2013 in Washington, D.C., and in July 2012 in Tokyo.
For the full joint fact sheet on the third U.S.-Japan Bilateral Commission on Civil Nuclear Cooperation meeting, click HERE.