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Uranium (Imports)

Volume 955: debated on Tuesday 24 October 1978

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asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the position regarding the proposed agreement of the United Kingdom to import uranium from Australia; whether the proposed agreement has been ruled contrary to EEC law by the Commission; and, if so, what the Govern- ment's future and present intentions are on the question of such imports.

A nuclear safeguards agreement was initialled by United Kingdom and Australian officials in June and communicated to the Commission in accordance with Article 103 of the Euratom Treaty. The Commission has commented that in its view the agreement's provisions could impede the application of the Euratom Treaty. Signature has therefore been delayed. Our objective remains to resolve these difficulties and to enable signature of the agreement to go ahead at the earliest possible date.