By Dominic Ochola

Over 300 international nuclear community stakeholders will converge in Kampala next week to discuss Uganda and Africa’s nuclear energy security and industrialization platform, the Ministry of Energy and Mineral Development has revealed.

This was revealed by Ruth Nankabirwa Ssentamu, the Minister of Energy while addressing journalists at the Ministry on Thursday. President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni will officiate the three-day platform that will commence from Tuesday 14th – Friday 17th March, 2023 at the Speke Resort Hotel Munyonyo.

Among the high ranking dignitaries expected to attend the summit include: Mikhail Chudakov, the Deputy Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency – IAEA, and Duncan Aleshia, the Chairperson of International Framework for Nuclear Energy Cooperation – IFNEC.

Nankabirwa explained that for a successful nuclear power programme, international support is vital for vendors to collaborate and explore suitable approaches to mitigate challenges of the nuclear industry and nuclear technology.

She noted that Uganda is experiencing an ever increasing population, economic growth, and rising social needs that require sustainable development of energy resources to meet the country’s Vision 2040 and National Development Plans – NDP goals.

Both Vision 2040 and the NDP identify electricity as modern energy as a critical driver of the socio-economic transformation that will shift the country from a peasantry to an industrialized and predominantly urban society.

In 2019, the government concluded pre-feasibility studies for the introduction of nuclear power in the electricity generation mix. In December 2021, the International Atomic Energy Agency endorsed Uganda’s nuclear energy power plant development following a successful review of the country’s nuclear infrastructure.

So far, the government has identified eight potential sites that include Buyende, Nakasongola and Lamwo Districts among others for the construction of a 2.000 MW Nuclear Power Project for energy security and industrialization.

Studies conducted by the Ministry, the country’s energy sector comprises electricity generation from hydro, biomass, geothermal, solar, and peat potential, which if fully developed cannot meet targets envisaged under Vision 2040.

Uganda is among seven other countries in the Sub-Saharan countries that have committed to integrating nuclear energy as part of their energy mixes between from 2030-2037. Other counties are Ghana, Kenya, Sudan, Rwanda, Zambia and Nigeria.

The seven-countries have already engaged with the International Atomic Energy Agency to establish their respective national legal frameworks such as site selections, drafting nuclear laws and regulations among others to aid nuclear power programmes. 


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