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House of Commons Hansard
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Written Statements
19 January 2017
Volume 619

Written Statements

Thursday 19 January 2017

Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

Overseas-owned Plutonium

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The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) has agreed to the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA):-

Taking ownership of 600 kg of material previously owned by a Spanish utility.

Taking ownership of 5 kg of material previously owned by a German organisation.

These transactions, which have been agreed by the Euratom supply agency, will not result in any new plutonium being brought into the UK, and will not therefore increase the overall amount of plutonium in the UK.

The Department has agreed to these transactions on the grounds that they offer a cost-effective and beneficial arrangement, which allows the UK to gain national control over more of the civil plutonium located in the UK, and facilitates conclusion of outstanding contracts with the Spanish and German counterparties. The revenue from the transaction is also expected to be of significant benefit to the UK and sufficient to cover the cost of the long term management of the additional plutonium.

The UK has committed to publish annual figures for national holdings of civil plutonium at the end of each calendar year to improve transparency and public confidence. The most recently published data for 2015 can be found at the following link, published on the 14 November 2016:

http://www.onr.org.uk/safeguards/iaeauk.htm

This data will be updated in due course to reflect the changes described above.

[HCWS422]

Wales

Wales Bill: English Votes for English Laws

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I am pleased to announce the publication of analysis of English votes for English laws in relation to Government amendments to the Wales Bill during its passage through the House of Lords.

The English votes for English laws process applies to public Bills in the House of Commons. To support the process, the Government have agreed that they will provide information to assist the Speaker in considering whether to certify that Bill or any of its provisions for the purposes of English votes for English laws. Bill provisions that relate exclusively to England or to England and Wales, and which have a subject matter within the legislative competence of one or more of the devolved legislatures, can be certified.

The memorandum provides an assessment of tabled Government amendments to the Wales Bill, for the purposes of English votes for English laws, ahead of Commons consideration of Lords amendments (CCLA). The Department’s assessment is the amendments do not change the territorial application of the Bill.

This analysis reflects the position should all the Government amendments be accepted.

The memorandum can be found on the Bill documents page of the Parliament website at: http://services.parliament. uk/bills/2016-17/wales.html and I have deposited a copy in the Libraries of both Houses.

[HCWS423]