OREANDA-NEWS. Singapore is an important partner for the IAEA and a strong example of South-South cooperation with its sharing of expertise with countries in the region, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano said on Monday in Singapore.

In January 2015, Singapore and the IAEA signed an agreement to enhance cooperation in capacity building which has already brought together more than 60 experts from Asia and the Pacific. The agreement has also led to the launch of a course on safeguards, to new fellowships on nuclear medicine and to a regional workshop on national legislation.

Since 2006, more than 300 Singaporean experts and fellows have been trained through IAEA support in radiation medicine and health, radiation safety, nuclear security, isotope hydrology and nuclear technology applied to industry in the areas of materials testing and characterization. These experts can now share their knowledge with neighbouring countries.

In April 2014, the government launched a nuclear safety research and education programme to be implemented over five years. The IAEA supported the training of scientists from different Singaporean research institutions at the at IAEA’s nuclear applications laboratories in Seibersdorf, Austria, and Monaco, as well as at the IRSN institute in France.

Following a workshop organized by the Environmental Health Institute of the National Environment Agency of Singapore in July 2015, Singapore decided to adopt the sterile insect technique — a type of birth control for insects that the IAEA makes available to Member States — to control the Aedes aegypti mosquito, a carrier of dengue fever.

Since then, the Agency has been providing Singapore with the necessary technical knowledge in partnership with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). Experts are now learning how to use ionizing radiation to sterilize male insects mass-produced in special rearing facilities.