Updated  
May, 07 2014 08:35:00

Viet Nam, US sign nuclear agreement

Minister of Science and Technology Nguyen Quan and US Ambassador to Viet Nam David Shear inked the accord, called the 123 Agreement. — VNA/VNS Photo Nguyen Thuy

HA NOI (VNS) — Viet Nam and the US officially signed a bilateral agreement on using nuclear energy for peaceful purposes yesterday.

Minister of Science and Technology Nguyen Quan and US Ambassador to Viet Nam David Shear inked the accord, called the 123 Agreement.

This pact was initialed by Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh and the US Secretary of State John Kerry on October 10 last year as part of the 23rd ASEAN summit in Brunei.

The agreement takes its inspiration from the spirit of Section 123 of the United States Atomic Energy Act of 1954, titled "Cooperation with Other Nations". It aims to create a legal framework for enhancing co-operation between Viet Nam and its US partners in research, training, development and application of nuclear energy, especially in the Southeast Asian nation.

The 30-year deal will open up great prospects for both countries to expedite specific co-operation projects in radiation application and the development of nuclear power for the socio-economic growth of each country, said Minister Quan.

Viet Nam is pursuing nuclear power to deal with its present energy shortage. The hope is that nuclear energy can address more than 10 per cent of the national power demand by 2030.

The country's nuclear power market is estimated as the second largest in Southeast Asia with estimated turnover of $50 billion in the next two decades, preceded only by China. — VNS

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