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Second Interim ITER Council held in Tokyo

-Sabina Griffith

The second meeting of the Interim ITER Council (IIC) took place on 11 and 12 July in Tokyo, under the Chairmanship of Sir Christopher Llewellyn-Smith, CCE-EU Chairman (EU). The meeting came about half a year after the first meeting held immediately after the signature in Paris on 21 November 2006. At the outset of the meeting, the IIC noted the progress made by the signatories in ratifying the ITER Agreement. The process is almost complete and the Agreement is now expected to enter into force within the next few months.

Mr Kaname Ikeda and his principal deputy Mr Norbert Holtkamp reported on the ramp up of project activities, including the assembly of the project team at the Cadarache site, the review of the ITER design, the development and deployment of management tools to match ITER's unique project structure, the preparation of detailed specifications for procuring ITER components, and the start of engineering work at the site.

The IIC recognized the progress being made and gave direction on a number of specific points, including the plans and detailed staffing and cost estimates for the construction phase, specific aspects of the management system, and on proposed agreements on relations with French authorities and with other international organizations, the IAEA, and CERN. The IIC also endorsed a proposed partnership arrangement with the Principality of Monaco.

The Chairman summed up: "The progress reported and the constructive discussions that took place during the meeting bode well for the future. The important and unprecedented international ITER collaboration is now taking the first steps to fruition."


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