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Intrinsic emission of undoped and Ce3+ doped single crystal (SC) and single crystalline films (SCF) of YALO3 (YAP) was studied using the time-resolved luminescence spectroscopy under excitation by pulsed X-ray and synchrotron radiation. In contrast to YAP SCF, the YAP bulk SC are characterized by the presence of Y-in-Al-positions antisite defects (AD) and large concentration of vacancy-type defects (VD) of different types, which contribute to the intrinsic emission of YAP SC. Such type defects are centers of the luminescence in the UV (6.0-4.75 eV) and near UV (4.75-2.2 eV) ranges, overlapping with the Ce absorption and emission bands. Furthermore, they can give rise to shallow trapping centers as well. For this reason the AD and VD can strongly influence the scintillation properties of YAP:Ce SC. Specifically, the decay kinetics of the Ce emission in YAP:Ce SC, besides the fast component (23.3 plusmn 3.5 ns) related to radiative 5d-4f transition of Ce ions, contains also two slow components in the hundred ns and mus ranges, which are due to the AD and VD-related traps. The advantages of scintillators based on YAP:Ce SCF, namely faster scintillation decay and lower contribution of slow components in the total light yield, can be achieved due to the absence of above mentioned bulk crystal defects.