By Ahsan Jamil
PAKISTAN`S INCLUSION in European Organization for Nuclear Research CERN as associate member gave it an unshakable standing amongst global community and it will help louden its say whose reverb will be felt across the globe now. An attestation of this was observed when Chairman Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission (PAEC) become first-ever head of PAEC to address CERN Council in Geneva, the dignified gathering of global scientific fraternity since Pakistan clinched the membership of prestigious organization.
Addressing on the occasion, Chairman PAEC, Muhammad Naeem said while enumerating various contributions of the CERN, “CERN has been shouldering an inestimable responsibility to the headway of science and technological base in Pakistan, which will help in national development of country through SandT thus carrying forward the mission of Nobel Laureate Professor Abdus Salam”.
Chairman PAEC cashed in the historic moment and opportunity to strengthen the bond of cooperation with CERN by advancing in science and technology by mutual endeavors and active participation. He said, “Pakistan comprehends that attaining CERN associate membership is not the end of the road and journey towards scientific and technological advancement has just begun and it will be supplemented by CERN cooperation. Pakistan targets to extend the canvas of experimentation in different domains of low and high energy physics, medical accelerators, and improving scientific education and resource building in core areas of science for the utmost resolve of CERN to unleash the mysteries of the universe”.
PAEC is the prime organization that has not only served country in defense sector but also in number of civil applications and peaceful use of technology including energy, medical science etc. The isolation of Pakistan in international community will be bridged through the milestone achievement of securing CERN membership as it was seen in 59th International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) GC held recently in Vienna, Austria.
Chairman PAEC was present in the IAEA GC and loudly conveyed Pakistans ambitions in escalating civil use of nuclear technology. He said, “The PAEC envisions 40,000 MW electricity production according to its vision 2050. The Karachi nuclear power plants K-2 and K-3 (2200MW collectively) will also make sizeable contribution to energy share of the country”.
Pakistan has the experience, trained manpower and facilities to become a provider of nuclear technology for peaceful purposes notwithstanding it being its beneficiary. We aim to play our part at international level as mainstream partner for non-proliferation with a full member of export control regimes, particularly the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG). Pakistan considers this to be a mutually beneficial proposition for the international community and as well as for itself. All these facts were strongly advocated in the IAEA GC by Muhammad Naeem.
The vehement message presented before the international community is of foremost importance because Pakistan has to encounter a gargantuan criticism from national and international nuclear security pundits scoring the grounds of Pakistan being incapable to handle nuclear power plants operations in an efficient and safer manner thus jolting risks to the population at large.
The softening of image of Pakistan in terms of peaceful use of technology will help in vaporizing of past allegations of nuclear technology export and proliferation. The notable development civil usage of nuclear technology over the years is encouraging and Government of Pakistan must ensure the strengthening of this sector for socio-economic uplift and curtailing the foreign dependence in energy, medical or other sectors.