Stemming from U.S. President Eisenhower\'s \"Atoms for Peace\" speech before the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1953, the Agency assists its 124 member states in their socio-economic development plans through the application of nuclear techniques in the areas of energy, agriculture, health, industry, quality assurance and basic research.
The basic interests of the member states are taken care of by the Agency\'s two main policy making organs, i.e., the Board of Governors and the General Conference. Their decisions shape the Organisation’s resources, programmes and priorities.
Each year the Agency provides hundreds of technical experts to the member states in order to train, advise, lecture and conduct research to foster self sufficient nuclear science programmes. A substantial part of the Agency\'s work relates to development of nuclear power, including its safety and waste management aspects and to the verification that nuclear technology is being utilised only for peaceful purposes.
This verification role in preventing the further spread of nuclear weapons involves deploying more than 200 inspectors worldwide to more than 1000 installation covered under the IAEA safeguards programme, including a certain number of nuclear installations in the states possessing nuclear weapons.
The Agency is focussing its emphasis on the nuclear safety. Although it is not an international regulatory body, its nuclear safety related work is chiefly oriented towards helping the national regulatory bodies of the member states. An international convention on nuclear safety has entered into force on 24th October, 1996 which addresses the safety of land-based civilian nuclear power plants. Many member states make use of Agency\'s safety recommendations as a basis for standards and rules.
The IAEA\'s programmes to foster peaceful nuclear applications, while diverse, are closely associated to its role to facilitate transfer of technology. Several of these programmes contribute, directly or indirectly, to the goals of Sustainable development and protection of environment as set out in \"Agenda 21\", the outcome of the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development. The Agency also has three international research laboratories and research centres where training and research projects are carried out mainly in support of technical cooperation and assistance activities. Many of these projects are conducted in conjunction with Food & Agricultural Organisation (FAO) and cover areas like plant breeding, genetics, insects and pests control, soil fertility, irrigation and crop production, animal husbandry and food preservation. Pakistan has remained an active participant in Agency\'s activities right from the beginning and has greatly benefited from its various programmes in promotion of nuclear techniques in the areas of energy, agriculture, health, industry and basic research.
The Agency\'s 40 years celebrations will focus on promotion of public information and understanding about its work. In this regard the Agency is planning publication of IAEA\'s history, essays, internation IAEA day, display of small videos on TVs of member states, honouring of researchers in the field of peaceful nuclear technology, etc.
In member states, the events highlighting the occasions are planned to be the seminars, symposia, scientific exhibitions by scientific organisations and societies, commemorative postal stamps and plagues, Pakistan being an active member of the IAEA is also sharing this celebrated occasion with the Agency.
(Contributed by: Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission)
To celebrate the occasion Pakistan Post Office is issuing a commemorative postage stamp on July 29,1997 of Rs. 2/- denomination.