The World Selection Committee is an six-person committee that meets once every year to assess the proposals of IAEA projects and activities so as to establish the minimum standards of suitable countries and/or States to be a full member of IAEA. The other members of the committee are responsible for considering the proposal and reports that come from the IAEA projects. The project coordinators report to the General Manager and the IAEA Director, together with the other four members of the committee. This report provides information on the current situation of the IAEA activities in each country, and outlines the aspects of the projects that need to be improved in order for these projects to be successful.
The World Selection Committee meets at least once a year, usually in March, to review the activities of the year before, during and following the Olympic Games in different countries. Each country is represented by a permanent member in this Committee. At this meeting, the countries make their application to join the IAEA, and the World Selection Committee reviews the applications. If the committee is not satisfied with the overall performance of the countries, it then makes recommendations to the Director General. The purpose of the committee is to ensure that all of the countries that wish to join the IAEA join effectively, without any irregularities.
To be a full member of the world selection committee, a country must first win an Olympic Games gold medal. It must also achieve an overall score of at leastiliarity with the activities approved by the IAEA, and meet all other conditions in the legally binding Olympic Program. For example, a country that does not have a nuclear weapon must, under the terms of the program, submit to the IAEA an updated list of its nuclear weapons.
Earlier this month, IAEA head negotiator Mladen Mikulak said that the purpose of the world selection committee was to ensure that the countries that are accepted into the organization fully meet the requirements and that the process of selection is based on sound principles. “The process works very smoothly and everything is done legally, so we have to maintain this high bar in order to stay in the organization,” he said. Mikulak added that the IAEA will continue to look for ways to upgrade the International Atomic Energy Agency’s facilities after the completion of the Mahabaleshwar nuclear power plant. However, a press release from India’s Department of Atomic Energy on August 6th stated that the IAEA has yet to sign an agreement on the upgrade.
In June, Mikulak told reporters in Geneva that India was working on improving its processing capabilities for nuclear weapons. “We have made a number of progress and that includes working up a new heavy water production facility which will help immensely with the peaceful aspects of our nuclear programme,” he said. “Indian authorities have taken a lot of time to finalize a robust project and to finalize a project which will meet all the parameters of safety and security.” The IAEA is one of the most trusted organizations in the world and its decision to down grade India’s efforts does not go down well with the global community.
India has been working hard to diversify its nuclear programme and its potential as a peaceful nation. The World Selection Committee has been sending signals since long that it is skeptical about India joining the IAEA, but now that it has chosen to join the organization, it is unclear how the organization will move forward. It is clear that the World Selection Committee has put a great deal of thought into this task, but whether or not India’s decision to join is justified remains to be seen.