National Policy for Atomic Energy Program approved

Cabinet endorses agreements to hire workers from Philippines, Ethiopia


Saudi Gazette report

— The Council of Ministers on Tuesday approved the National Policy for the Kingdom’s Atomic Energy Program.

The weekly session of the Cabinet, chaired by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman at Al-Yamamah Palace, took the decision after reviewing a report presented by the minister of energy, industry and mineral resources and chairman of the board of King Abdullah City for Atomic and Renewable Energy.

Minister of Culture and Information Awwad Al-Awwad said the National Policy limits all nuclear development activities for peaceful purposes within the frameworks and rights defined by international legislation, pacts and conventions.

In a statement to the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) following the session, the minister said the new policy will be fully compliant with the principle of transparency in regulatory and operational aspects.

The policy aims at achieving nuclear safety and security standards at nuclear and radiological facilities in accordance with independent regulatory and supervisory frameworks.

It targets optimum utilization of national natural resources from nuclear materials and the application of the best global standards and practices for radioactive waste management.

The policy also aims at achieving sustainability by developing the local content in the atomic energy sector.

Al-Awwad said the Cabinet approved the organization of the Nuclear and Radiation Control Authority after reviewing the recommendations made by the minister of energy, industry and mineral resources as well as that of the Council of Economic and Development Affairs.

The Cabinet had already referred to the Shoura Council two draft laws — Civil Liability Law for Nuclear Damage and Nuclear and Radiation Control Law — to carry out studies in accordance with the legal procedures.

After examining a report by the minister of labor and social development, the Cabinet approved the labor cooperation agreement to hire and employ workers in the general category from the Philippines.

The agreement was signed earlier in Riyadh by the ministry with the Ministry of Labor and Employment of the Philippines.

The Cabinet also endorsed an agreement signed earlier in Jeddah between the ministry and the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs of Ethiopia for hiring domestic workers.