NRC assisting Ghana on developing nuclear regulatory framework

July 24, 2023, 12:00PMNuclear News

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission and the Ghana Nuclear Regulatory Authority reaffirmed last week its shared commitment to continue cooperation on nuclear safety and regulation for the African nation.

NRC chair Christopher T. Hanson and Ghana’s NRA director general Nii Kwashie Allotey discussed their collaboration since the 2017 signing of an inaugural bilateral arrangement for cooperation and the exchange of technical information. According to the NRC, the U.S. agency and Ghana’s NRA have engaged frequently on a variety of nuclear energy safety- and security-related topics as the African nation develops a regulatory oversight program for nuclear power.

They said it: “We have worked closely with Ghana’s NRA as it develops a technically competent, independent regulatory program in preparation of overseeing commercial nuclear power in Ghana,” Hanson said. “Establishing a strong and transparent regulatory framework based on high safety standards is a critical step toward the adoption of nuclear technologies. We have a long-standing partnership with Ghana’s regulator, and we welcome our continued collaboration as NRA progresses in establishing a regulatory structure.”

Allotey also reconfirmed the partnership. “We value the partnership that the NRA has forged over many years with the U.S. NRC, one of the world’s leading and most experienced nuclear regulators,” he said. “We greatly value the NRC’s expertise as we seek to develop Ghana’s own strong, independent regulatory oversight program. International partnerships such as this provide a solid foundation for the NRA’s oversight programs, which will protect people and the environment and align with international standards and obligations.”

More: The NRC-NRA bilateral relationship is part of broader cooperation between the U.S. and Ghanaian governments as Ghana embarks on creating a nuclear power program and establishing a legal framework with the U.S. government for civil nuclear cooperation, known as a 123 Agreement.

During his visit to Ghana, Hanson also met with leaders in the Ghana Atomic Energy Commission; the Ministry of Energy; and the Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation. During his tour, Hanson talked about his commitment to continue working together and stressed the importance of regulatory independence for building public trust.

The NRC noted in a July 21 press release that it strongly supports exchanges with partners around the world to share best practices for ensuring safe, accountable, and transparent use of nuclear energy technologies.

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