Executive Secretary

    Statements

    Unit B2003, Corobay Corner, 169 Corobay Avenue,
    Waterkloof Glen, 0010, Pretoria, South Africa
    E afcone.admin@afcone.org T 0027 (0)87 096 0715
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    STRENGTHENING NUCLEAR SECURITY IN AFRICA

    Implementing the Amended Convention on the Physical Protection of
    Nuclear Material (A/CPPNM) for a Safer Future

    30 May 2023| 14:00-16:30 GMT | Virtual Workshop

    Esteemed Participants,

    First and foremost, I would like to express my sincere appreciation to the African Center for Science and International Security (AFRICSIS) and Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI) for organizing this significant meeting aimed at promoting sustainable socio-economic development in Africa and advancing global peace and security. I would also like to extend my gratitude to each and every one of you present here for your valuable participation and support.

    As we mark one year since the first review conference of the Amended Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Materials (the A/CPPNM), it is crucial to maintain focus on the outcomes of the conference while also reflecting on the progress and challenges of implementation since last year.

    The A/CPPNM stands as the sole legally binding multilateral agreement on nuclear security, playing a central role in the responsible stewardship of nuclear materials and the management of nuclear activities, both within Africa and globally. The right of countries to access and develop civil applications of nuclear energy for socio-economic development is enshrined in Article IV of the Treaty
    on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).

    Nuclear security, often overlooked, is an integral part of the nuclear non-proliferation architecture. At the national level, the establishment of State Systems for Accounting and Control of Nuclear Materials serves as an international standard for advancing nuclear non-proliferation norms. In order for African countries to fully engage in international trade and cooperation related to the peaceful applications of nuclear energy, adherence to international non-proliferation norms, including nuclear security, is imperative.

    It is important to highlight that the African Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty obliges its parties to adhere to the A/CPPNM. This exemplifies how the Treaty of Pelindaba elevates the standards within the global legislative framework for peace and security.

    While the A/CPPNM itself does not stipulate specific implementation goals, State Parties to the Treaty of Pelindaba commit to implementing recommendations and guidelines developed by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for this purpose. This further demonstrates Africa’s proactive role in strengthening the effectiveness of regional and global nuclear security norms.

    Africa already possesses the necessary legal infrastructure to bolster and ensure the effective implementation of the A/CPPNM. Our current task is to take the necessary steps to facilitate this implementation. This important 3rd virtual African regional workshop on STRENGTHENING NUCLEAR SECURITY IN AFRICA provides us with the opportunity to make substantial progress toward that objective.