On Sunday, June 17, Kazakhstan's Energy Minister Bolat Akchulakov met with the U.S. Charge d'Affaires in Kazakhstan and representatives of the Bureau of International Security for Nuclear Nonproliferation of the Cooperative Threat Reduction program of the U.S. Department of State.
"The U.S. side has invited us to participate in the Foundational Infrastructure for Responsible Use of Small Modular Reactor Technology (FIRST) program," the minister said after the meeting.
FIRST is a capacity-building program designed to deepen strategic ties, support clean energy innovation, and advance technical collaboration with partner nations on secure, safe, and responsible use of nuclear energy infrastructure.
For the U.S., Kazakhstan would be the latest country to join its initiative launched at the Leaders’ Summit on Climate where the U.S. committed to supporting the expansion of access to clean nuclear energy.
In Kazakhstan's case, the cooperation presents an opportunity to gain valuable expertise in the construction of nuclear reactors.
Since announcing plans to build a nuclear power plant in the Almaty region in early June, Kazakhstan has been seeking international expertise from countries like the U.S., France, South Korea, Japan, Russia and China.