12 countries discuss nuclear
cooperation in Jakarta

Technology ministers and senior officials from 12 countries, including Japan, China, South Korea and Australia, are attending the Forum for Nuclear Cooperation in Asia (FNCA) in Jakarta.

Participants from Indonesia, Japan, Australia, Bangladesh, China, Kazakhstan, South Korea, Malaysia, Mongolia, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam will share information on the latest nuclear technology and development in their countries at the two-day meeting, which began on Saturday.

Indonesian Research and Technology Minister Gusti Muhammad Hatta, Japanese Deputy Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology Minister Shinkun Haku, Bangladeshi Research and Technology Minister Yeafesh Osman and Malaysian Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Maximus Johnity Ongkili attended the first day of the meeting.

Antara news wire reported that Gusti said that nuclear technology had contributed much in many aspects, including in agriculture, health and the environment. Gusti also cited the results of a survey that said most Indonesians supported the construction of nuclear power plants.

Gusti, who did not reveal details about the survey, said that 52.8 percent of the survey’s respondents were in favor of nuclear power plants, while 24.3 percent rejected the idea.

To date, the government’s plan to build a nuclear plant in Muria, Jepara, Central Java, has been widely rejected and criticized by people living in the vicinity and by environmental organizations.

National Nuclear Agency (Batan) head Djarot Wisnubroto said Indonesia should keep learning to develop safe nuclear technology.

“In this forum, we have Japan, which is ready to share its success story in handling the nuclear accident in Fukushima,” he said.

“Not only will Japan tell us how to clean up the damage from an accident, it will also share how to lift the morale of society after such an incident,” he added. (lfr)

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