Civil Nuclear Cooperation MoU To Deepen Kenya, US Bilateral Strategic Relationship
The United States of America and the Kenyan Government signed a Memorandum of Understanding concerning Strategic Civil Nuclear Cooperation which seeks to deepen the bilateral strategic relationship between the two Governments in nuclear power and non-power applications of nuclear technology in areas that include nuclear power, nuclear waste management, nuclear medicine, nutrition, agriculture, mining, research and development through the Nuclear Power and Energy Agency.
The agency is a State Corporation established under the Energy Act 2019. It is charged with the responsibility of promoting and implementing Kenya’s Nuclear Power Programme, carrying out research and development for the energy sector. Towards attainment of its mandate, the Nuclear Power and Energy Agency develops policies and legislation, undertake public education and awareness, identify suitable sites for the construction of Nuclear Power Plants; carry out research, development and innovation on energy technologies as well as capacity building for the energy sector.
Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Bonnie D. Jenkins signed the MoU for the United States while Dr. Alfred Mutua, Cabinet Secretary of Foreign and Diaspora Affairs, signed for Kenya.
The signed Memorandum of Understanding plays an important role in supporting the development of Kenya’s nuclear industry through the Promotion of the security of the Republic of Kenya’s energy supply and simultaneously helping the country meet its clean energy needs.
It also supports the Government of Kenya’s commitments in the Nuclear Regulatory Act No.29 of 2019 which comprehensively seeks to regulate the utilization of conventional sources of radiation and nuclear energy for electricity production in a manner that prioritizes nuclear safety, security and safeguards.
The Mou signed fosters the implementation of international commitments under the Treaty on Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons and the monitoring of safeguards (non-proliferation) requirements in collaboration with the International Atomic Energy Agency (‘IAEA’) and support the implementation of the Country Programme Framework (‘CPF’) between the Government of Kenya and the IAEA (2023-2027) in nuclear power infrastructure development and non-power applications of nuclear technology.
Moreover, the signing fosters friendly relations between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Kenya and their peoples through technical cooperation and transfer of technology as well as providing a framework for cooperation on civil nuclear issues and for engagement between experts from government, industry, national laboratories, and academic institutions.
Nuclear Cooperation MoUs are diplomatic mechanisms that strengthen and expand strategic ties between the United States and a partner country and do not create binding legal obligations and the activities of the Parties are subject to respective national laws and regulations.