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European Commission Continues its Support of Ukraine's Nuclear Safety Program

eng_news26Today, Ukraine and the European Commission made a new step in the nuclear security cooperation. One day before the major international conference on Chernobyl, the European Commission and Ukraine signed the Agreement on financing the Programme of Action for nuclear safety, 2010 - Part II.

The document envisages several joint actions, including a nuclear safety program, management of the nuclear wastes and EU's technical assistance to the Ukrainian public authorities responsible for nuclear safety. The European Commission will allocate 110 million Euros for Ukraine under the Agreement.

The signing of the Agreement marked the first day of the visit the European Commission's President Jose Emmanuel Barrosoto Ukraine. During the trip, Barroso will take part in a major international conference "Chornobyl, 25 Years. Safety for the Future," which will start on April 19. The main goal of the conference is to provide discussion platform on the issues of nuclear safety. Also, the conference is to become the international public forum to assess the current level of the catastrophe's impact and the necessary level of international support.

Over the years, the European Union has been playing a major role in supporting Chernobyl, being the main financial donor of Chernobyl's major projects. To the date, The European commission invested over 470 million Euros into Chernobyl-related projects. Such assistance has supported the safety improvements at Chernobyl, and provided help to people whose lives are still affected by the accident.

As the largest donor to the Chernobyl Shelter Fund, the Commission has pledged some 240 million euros (over a quarter of the total amount) for the construction of a new shell over the damaged reactor.

In addition to contributions to international funds (the Chernobyl Shelter Fund and the Nuclear Safety Account) the Commission has also funded projects aimed at studying, assessing and mitigating the consequences of the Chernobyl accident.

Though 25 years have passed since the accident took place, the consequences of the disaster are not over. Therefore Ukraine continues to look for international support to Chernobyl-related projects while investing significant funds into the consequences management as well as providing direct financial aid to the affected people and their relatives.

http://ec.europa.eu

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