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Workshop addresses Challenges of updating National Legislations on Transport

  18 to 22 April 2016, Vienna Austria

Representatives from four IAEA regional networks for the safe transport of radioactive material met in Vienna from 18 to 22 April 2016 to discuss challenges in updating their national legislation according to the "IAEA Regulations on Transport of Radioactive Material" (SSR-6).

In their opening addresses, both the acting Deputy-Director General of the Department of Technical Cooperation, Ms Ana Raffo-Caiado, and the Deputy Director General of the Department of Nuclear Safety and Security, Mr Juan Carlos Lentijo, stressed the importance for the members of the regional networks to cooperate in a spirit of mutual trust and respect, to continue their active participation and to draw on lessons learned from each other. This "global workshop" was also the occasion for the participants to meet and interact with representatives of the other networks.

Updating national legislation

Almost 80 delegates from Africa, the Asian-Pacific region, Latin America and the Caribbean and the Mediterranean Basin , representing 57 countries, presented their situations concerning the development of their national legislation on transport of radioactive material.

Currently, in several countries, the national legislation is based on the previous version of the IAEA transport regulations, (TS-R-1), instead of the current version (SSR-6). During the workshop, each of the regional networks, with the help of experts from India, the United States, Australia and the European Union, made substantial progress in drafting their national legislation.

Specifically, participants were presented with different options for possible structures of their legislation depending on their individual legal system.

Tailoring national legislation to actual needs can prove challenging, as experienced by some of the participants when incorporating issues such as enforcement of requirements, penalties for non-compliance, or other important concerns such as liability and security.

The regional networks approach promoted by the IAEA is essential not only for developing the countries own national legislation, but also for facilitating a constructive dialogue on approaches and changes to consider in drafting national regulations as well as ensuring a harmonised understanding and implementation of the legislation. As a result of the workshop, many participants completed revisions of existing regulations or completed first drafts of basic regulations for transport. In the next months, workshop participants are expected to provide the IAEA with an update on their progress in installing their regulations at the national level.

E-learning and Next Steps

The participants were also introduced to an IAEA-developed e-learning training course on the safe transport of radioactive material for supporting the staff of the Competent Authorities. The tool will provide them with an easily accessible, online resource to further their knowledge.

The participants emphasized the importance of future inter-regional workshops to facilitate a common understanding of each country's regulations. This common understanding will further facilitate uninterrupted, cross border transport of radioactive material—where these challenges exist due to regulatory inconsistencies and variations.

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| Last update: Tuesday, 10 May, 2016.