IAEA Reviews Sri Lanka’s nuclear power infrastructure

19 April 2022

An International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review (INIR) team of experts had concluded a six-day mission to Sri Lanka, IAEA said on 15 April. The was carried out from 4 to 11 April at the request of the Government of Sri Lanka.

Sri Lanka is seeking to increase and diversify its power production capacity and is looking at nuclear power as a reliable and low carbon option to support its target of achieving carbon neutrality of the electricity sector by 2050.

The INIR team reviewed the status of nuclear infrastructure development using the Phase 1 criteria from the IAEA's Milestones Approach, which provides detailed guidance across three phases of development (consider, prepare, construct). Phase 1 evaluates the readiness of a country to make a knowledgeable commitment to a nuclear power programme. The Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Board hosted the mission.

The INIR team comprised five international experts from Algeria, the Czech Republic, Romania, the UK and the USA, and four IAEA staff.

Before the mission, Sri Lanka had prepared and submitted a self-evaluation report and supporting documents covering all infrastructure issues to the IAEA.

“The INIR team concluded that Sri Lanka has engaged the relevant stakeholders in considering the introduction of nuclear power and initiated the appropriate studies to enable the Government to make a decision on the nuclear power programme,” said team leader Jose Bastos from the IAEA’s Nuclear Infrastructure Development Section.

The team said Sri Lanka needs to further develop its pre-feasibility study on introducing a nuclear power programme. The team also noted that Sri Lanka’s Nuclear Energy Programme Implementing Organisation should prepare recommendations for the Government to make an informed decision on the nuclear power programme. Sri Lanka should also complete its analysis of the legal and regulatory framework required for nuclear power, including preparations for establishing an independent regulatory body. Moreover, the team raised the need to further develop relevant human resources and competencies required for a nuclear programme and to intensify its “already promising” stakeholder involvement activities.

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