NAPSNet Daily Report 31 August, 2010
Contents in this Issue:
1. Sino-DPRK Relations
Chosun Ilbo (“KIM JONG-IL’S CHINA VISIT ‘HASTILY ARRANGED'”, Seoul, 2010/08/31) reported that DPRK leader Kim Jong-il’s latest visit to the PRC seems to have been arranged hastily at an abrupt request from Pyongyang, a diplomatic source in Beijing said. During Kim’s latest visit, the PRC appears to have accorded him unprecedentedly warm hospitality, with President Hu Jintao staying at the same hotel as Kim after their summit on Saturday and regional leaders throwing a dinner party. But there is speculation that Kim’s talks with Hu were not substantial.
2. ROK on Sino-DPRK Relations
Yonhap (Lee Chi-dong, “LEE VIEWS N.K. LEADER’S TRIP POSITIVELY”, Seoul, 2010/08/31) reported that ROK President Lee Myung-bak gave a positive assessment Tuesday of DPRK leader Kim Jong-il’s trip to the PRC, saying it must have allowed the leader to witness for himself the rapid economic growth of the PRC. “I positively evaluate that Chairman Kim frequents China,” Lee said during a Cabinet meeting, according to presidential spokeswoman Kim Hee-jung. “I see China’s role positively as well,” the president added. Cheong Wa Dae said Seoul’s ambassador to Beijing was debriefed from the Chinese side on the results of the latest Hu-Kim summit.
3. Japan on Six-Party Talks
Associated Press (“JAPAN SAY STOO EARLY TO RESUME KOREA NUCLEAR TALKS”, Tokyo, 2010/08/31) reported that in a meeting Tuesday with PRC nuclear envoy Wu Dawei, Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada said conditions for the six-party talks were not right considering the increased tensions in the region over the sinking of an ROK warship in March. “As South Korea is dealing with the sinking of its warship, it is still too early to resume the six-party talks,” Okada was quoted as telling Wu.
4. Japanese Nuclear Security
Japan Atomic Industrial Forum (“NEW MEXT CENTER TO SUPPORT NUCLEAR SECURITY”, Tokyo, 2010/08/30) reported that the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) has announced plans to establish a Center for Comprehensive Support of Nuclear Nonproliferation and Nuclear Security. The purpose of the center will be to develop technology to measure, detect and identify nuclear material (part of Japan’s contribution to bolstering international nuclear security), focusing on the development of human-resources and technology.
5. Japanese Nuclear Power
Japan Atomic Industrial Forum (“1,800-MW-CLASS NEXT GENERATION LWR BEING DEVELOPING IN JAPAN AS INTERNATIONAL STANDARD REACTOR”, Tokyo, 2010/08/30) reported that on August 17, the Institute of Applied Energy (IAE) presented the Atomic Energy Commission of Japan (JAEC) with a report on its interim evaluation of the development of next-generation light water reactors (LWRs). In anticipation of the need to replace current nuclear power plants (NPPs), both in Japan and around the world, starting around 2030 both Japan’s public and private sectors have been working jointly to finalize concepts for next-generation LWRs, both boiling water reactors (BWRs) and pressurized water reactors (PWRs), in the 1,700-1,800-MWe class. In the next-generation BWR, new materials will eliminate the need to replace the shroud during the plant’s entire 80-year life. The next-generation PWR, meanwhile, will deliver higher electric output by achieving the world’s highest level of thermal efficiency of about 40%.