KACARE AND MSIP of the Republic of South Korea have signed, in the audience of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman ibn Abdulaziz, a Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation in the peaceful uses of Nuclear Energy. The Memorandum is centered on the collaborative programs that will emanate from the newly established “smart participation” mainly dealing with the development of technologies of Small Modular Reactor (SMR), Joint Nuclear Human Capacity Building and Academic Research, with an ultimate objective of boosting and promoting a creative economy.
The above-cited MOU is but an early natural offshoot of an early bilateral international agreement signed between the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Republic of South Korea. The Agreement affirms the desire of both sides to broaden the horizon of mutual cooperation, mainly in the peaceful uses of Nuclear Energy. The same esprit de corps was also stressed in the Memorandum of Understanding KACARE signed in Riyadh with the Korean Atomic Energy Research Institute (KAERI) on 10 December 2013. This Memorandum focused on cooperation in research areas, the infrastructure required for research reactors, and conducting a comprehensive techno-economic study on the Korean-type SMART reactor.
It is noteworthy that the said partnership shall build on joint investment and co-ownership of IPRs with an objective being the establishment of a technological partnership the core of which will be the technology of the above-named reactor. The methodology to be followed will be moving ahead with a phased developmental strategy targeting the building-up of accumulated technologies of the said reactor within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Then the targeted reactor will then be commercialized and promoted world-wide through exporting the developed technologies the IPRs of which will be a co-ownership.
Having built the nuclear human capacities together with the outcome of the academic research, a full-scope knowledge of the technicalities and design of the reactor will be transfused into Saudi cadres, starting from affording the necessary training to Saudi manpower, and down through on-the-job training. Moreover, a specifically devised two-year program for human capacity building will be established. The Saudi staff will fully participates in laying down the blueprints of the reactor designs thus ensuring a full and complete transfer of technological knowledge.
Undisputedly, human capacity building for the production of nuclear power within the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is a national pursuit of paramount importance as it will essentially contribute to the sincerely devoted endeavors to devise a sustainable development future for Saudi generations. Such a picturesque portrait will surely become more attainable when the element of nuclear power as a source is added to the mix of our national energy system. However, make no doubt that in order this Saudi dream comes true all this should be built on a deeply-rooted knowledge infrastructure oriented towards engineering, design, construction and operation capacity building. In addition, creation of accurate data bases will be indispensable ingredients in this respect. Let’s keep our finger crossed that the Memorandum of Understanding just signed will form an adamant and robust cornerstone the building on which will produce further joint cooperation in the field of technology and nuclear associations for the best interest of economy and energy as a whole in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.