ISLAMABAD - The visiting delegation of European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) has expressed satisfaction regarding Pakistan's nuclear research capability and its willingness to improve further in the field thus making the case of Pakistan stronger to become Associate Member of CERN.

Head of visiting team Dr Sergio Bertolucci told the media men at a press conference here on Thursday that they will present their assessment report about Pakistan's capability to the higher authorities or the Council of CERN in coming June or September and Pakistan might become a member of the organization.

Dr Sergio Bertolucci said that after getting a positive nod from the council, the Pakistani government would be needed to ratify international agreements for becoming associate member of this forum.

The CERN members include 20 European countries. Recently, Israel has been accorded its membership. There are 3 associate members and 5 observer states including India.

Until 2010 the CERN Membership was exclusively restricted to European countries. However, it is now open to non-European States as well.

To raise the collaboration level between Pakistan and CERN, Pakistan has recently applied for the Associate Membership of CERN. Pakistan fulfills all the criteria for becoming a CERN Associate Member. The industrial base and experience of high precision manufacturing enables Pakistan to make significant contributions to the CERN program. Pakistan has very cordial relationship with the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) located in Geneva, Switzerland. CERN is a world leading scientific organization, which has been conducting research on High Energy Particle Physics since its inception in 1954. The four-member delegation of CERN visited Pakistan from February 10 to 14 and scrutinized nuclear research capability of different installations including Heavy Mechanical Complex (HMC-3).

During their stay in Pakistan, the European delegation met with PM Nawaz Sharif and different federal ministers including Federal Minister for Planning and Development Ehsan Iqbal.

Chairman PAEC Dr Ansar Pavrez said that all procedural requirements would be accomplished in next six to eight months and hoped that the country would become part of CERN without facing any major problems.

When asked to identify areas where Pakistan required improvements for becoming associate member of CERN, the delegation head said that Pakistan would have to improve its networking capability, which will become catalyst for moving at accelerated pace in area of scientific and nuclear research capabilities.

There are few areas impeding faster development and one area is improving networking capability, he added. He said that Pakistan was not granted status of observer at the forum of CERN because in 2010 this portfolio was abolished.

Now Pakistan has submitted its application for becoming associate member of this forum and the process for evaluating the country's capability kick-started with the visit of this delegation, he added.

The Chairman PAEC said that there was difference in capabilities of scientific researchers working in Pakistan with the developed world. The internet, he said, made an easy access to everything that has resulted into enhancing opportunities for talented people around the globe.

There are numerous benefits if Pakistan becomes Associate Member of CERN such as: Increased number of engineering contracts to support CERN programs which will be beneficial for our industrial sector, human resource development and technology transfer in key areas of radiofrequency (RF) technology, ion beam optics, cryogenics etc. The intellectual benefits are numerous and the scientific approach would increase manifolds.

Various applications of particle accelerators are cancer treatment, sustainable and cleaner source of energy, disposal of nuclear waste, improved materials such as polymers, implantation of ions in semi-conductors, or date archaeological findings, etc.