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Sergey Kirienko: Our goal is to create a nuclear medicine cluster in Russia

The 7th International Conference on Isotopes has started working on the 5th of September in Moscow World Trade Centre. It is organized by Rosatom State Corporation.

The elite of the world isotope industry will take part in this key event for science and business. Among the participants are: World Council on Isotope, International Atomic Energy Agency, Belgian Nuclear Research Centre, Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organization and a number of other leading companies of the isotope industry. Upon an initiative of Rosatom, for the first time, in addition to plenary and break-out sessions and the exhibition of the newest achievements in the fields of isotope production and equipment, a special business program is included into the Conference. Participants will be able to discuss the world trends of the isotope market development, the problems of investment into the isotope industry and the ways of increasing production powers.

The Conference was officially opened by Sergey Kirienko, Director General of Rosatom State Corporation.

Here is the speech of Mr. Kirienko:

Good afternoon, ladies and gentleman!

I will try to be short as we have serious and substantial reports to be made.

I would like to say that I am glad to welcome you to the 7th International Conference on Isotopes that takes place in Moscow.

The International Conference on Isotopes is a key forum that only gathers once in three years and brings together experts of the highest class, the elite of the isotope industry from all over the world. Today we are very pleased to see you all here and I would like to thank you for coming to Moscow to attend this Conference.

Isotopes long ago gained a firm footing in our daily lives. Today they are used in sterilization of medical equipment and materials, space hardware, food, water and industrial waste. Modern control systems with the use of radiation are installed at all strategic objects and transport hubs.

But the trademark of the world isotope industry is undoubtedly nuclear medicine as no other application of atomic energy has been so useful for the society. Thanks to using isotopes, doctors save hundreds, even thousands of lives every day. About 30 million diagnostic procedures are annually carried out all over the world. Isotopes are used in different branches of medicine, such as oncology, cardiology, urology and others.

It is not a secret that one of today’s main problems is the world shortage of molybdenum-99 which is the key isotope in nuclear medicine. I am sure that on this Conference we will pay special attention to discussion of possible ways of reducing this global deficit.

I would like to say that Russia and Rosatom State Corporation have made the first step in reducing the shortage. Last year, when the world experienced this deficit, we decided to launch extra production of Mo-99 in Dimitrovograd, and I can say that the project has been implemented successfully. As planned, last summer we started mass production and the test batches have been already shipped to Canada. Thanks to combined efforts of our and foreign specialists we launched one of the most advanced Mo-99 production units in Russian Federation.

The uniqueness of this project is that it uses the production base of one of the world’s largest research centres – the Institute of Atomic Reactors in Dimitrovgrad. Three reactors are used for molybdenum-99 production. It means that we can guarantee that no technical regulations or even consecutive stops of any of the reactors can affect the supply of molybdenum-99 to the customers that is extremely important in today’s situation.

In 2012 we are planning to launch the second production line and achieve the estimated capacity. We made calculations according to the agreements with our partners and clients for elimination the shortage on the world market.

Development of the world market stimulates the growing demand for radiation equipment and engineering solutions. The volume of the world market of nuclear medicine, which is today 12 billion dollars, is estimated to reach 68 billion dollars by 2030, which is by 5.5 times. There are very few industries that experience such growth rates. Moreover, nuclear medicine is one of the most innovative and rapidly developing sectors of the world economics and it can become the driver of innovative development of economics in Russia. Our objective is to create a cluster of nuclear medicine in Russia. The government requires us to produce not less that 50% of medical equipment in Russia which means we need to be flexible in cooperating with the world leaders in this field. I want to say that it has been decided to not to try to do everything by ourselves, but to take the road of integration, partnership and cooperation, including creation of joint ventures to produce equipment and necessary components for research and development both in Russia and in the territories of our partners.

The first contract has already been signed: Rosatom and Philips are planning to establish production of positron emission tomographs in Russia. But we are ready for further integration. That is why I would like to tell all our partners that came to Moscow that we expect to discuss not only global problems but also practical ways of cooperation.

We are sure that in the 21st century not only energetic capacities of the atom but also unique properties of isotopes will be developed. Radiation technologies application broadens which means new horizons of opportunities as well as dynamically developing business.

For almost 20 years the scope of application of radiation technologies in Russia was much lower than the level of technical opportunities. Today Russia’s atomic industry is ready for changes, increase of production and formation of integrated clusters. We are open to partner relationships and development of the whole range of peaceful atomic products.

I would like to once again welcome everyone in Moscow. I believe that the 7th International Conference on Isotopes, with the collective experience and wisdom of its participants, will help us find the right approaches to today’s challenges in the increasingly important isotope industry.

I wish you all success and fruitful cooperation.


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