These observation was included in the conclusions of the holistic peer review of the 19 nuclear power infrastructure issues required in the development of the country’s Nuclear Power Programme (NPP), by the Integrated Nuclear Infrastructure Review (INIR) mission from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
The INIR team, comprising of international experts from Germany, Morocco, the United Kingdom and South Africa, as well as IAEA staff, at the conclusion of its eight-mission in Ghana, admitted that considerable progress in the development of the require nuclear power infrastructure had been made.
These they said included the establishment of the effective mechanisms to involve a wide range of national stakeholders in the relevant activities, as well as the establishment of the Ghana Nuclear Power Programme Organisation, to coordinate all the governmental activities prepared to make an informed, long-term commitment to developing an NPP.
The INIR team encouraged the country to complete all impending studies including the update of the national energy planning projections on schedule, to enable government to make a knowledgeable decision on a nuclear power programme.
It said analysis of the feasibility of incorporating an NPP into the national and the West African electric grid must also be completed, while ensuring the identification of candidate sites, and making available appropriate resources to complete all the remaining activities.
It also stressed on the need for further assessment of the legal framework to ensure its adequacy for nuclear power, while ensuring the preparation for an early commencement of its second Phase activities including discussions with vendors and their potential partners.
The INIR team suggested that a swift analysis and development of a broader range of options for financing, nuclear fuel cycle and industrial involvement in order to be well informed during discussions with vendors and other potential partners.
It further suggested that in the contest of these options, there was the need to strengthen the national human resource strategy for the NPP, and develop a structured stakeholder engagement plan while continuing to implement its short term activities.
Professor Benjamin J. B. Nyarko, the Director General of the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission, welcomed the outcome of the INIR mission, giving the assurance that Ghana remained committed to the step-by-step development of its nuclear power programme, and would take earnest steps to address the identified gaps.
The INIR mission, which is a service provided by the IAEA, was upon an official request made by the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission (GAEC), acting on behalf of the Ghana Nuclear Power Programme Organisation (GNPPO), to review the status of the development of the country’s 19 nuclear power infrastructure issues.
The results of the INIR mission are expected to help the Member State to develop an action plan to fill any gaps, which would in turn help the development of the national nuclear infrastructure.