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Nuclear Safety (Former Soviet Union)

Volume 300: debated on Thursday 13 November 1997

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To ask the President of the Board of Trade if she will make a statement on the safeguards training assistance currently being conducted by British Nuclear Fuels in the former Soviet Union. [14716]

My Department has in recent years funded a range of collaborative activities designed to help improve nuclear safeguards and nuclear materials accountancy and control arrangements in the former Soviet Union. Details have been provided in papers presented at a number of international safeguards symposia, copies of which have been placed in the Library of the House.Work involving safeguards experts from BNFL and their counterparts from the Mayak reprocessing plant in Russia has been a particularly important aspect of these activities. This has yielded improvements in nuclear materials accountancy practices at Mayak and also recommendations on further work necessary to bring these practices into line with those at more modern reprocessing plants. The substantial funding necessary to implement fully the recommended programme of nuclear materials accountancy improvements at Mayak is being sought from the European Union's TACIS programme.