Japan and Jordan have signed a memorandum of cooperation in nuclear energy. Under the agreement, Japan will assist the Middle Eastern country with its introduction of nuclear energy.
The agreement between the Jordan Atomic Energy Commission and Japan's Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry was signed in Tokyo during a visit by Jordan's King Abdullah II.
The accord was signed by Toru Ishida, Director General of the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy, and Suhair Al-Ali, Jordanian minister of planning and international cooperation.
Under the five-year agreement, which can be extended for a further five years, Japan will provide assistance to Jordan to facilitate the introduction of nuclear power in the country, ensuring safety and nuclear non-proliferation.
The scope of the cooperation will include the preparation of a nuclear power development plan and help with the necessary infrastructure. Japan will also provide training related to nuclear power and technology, as well as human resource development. It will also advise Jordan on nuclear safety and security. The two countries will also cooperate in the identification of uranium resources.
The Jordanian energy minister has said that the country, which has virtually no oil or gas resources, expects to have a nuclear power plant operating by 2017, for electricity and desalination. Jordan's Committee for Nuclear Strategy has set out a program for nuclear power to provide 30% of electricity by 2030 or 2040, and to provide for exports.
Jordan has already signed nuclear cooperation agreements with the USA, Canada, France and UK, in respect to both power and desalination, and is seeking help from the IAEA. It has signed a nuclear cooperation agreement with China, covering uranium mining in Jordan and nuclear power, and another with South Korea related to infrastructure including nuclear power and desalination. It has also signed a preliminary cooperation agreement with Russia.