NIA gives thumbs up to government's Euratom pledges
11 Jan 2018
The Nuclear Industry Association has welcomed the government’s statement on Euratom delivered by minister Greg Clark.
Chief executive Tom Greatrex applauded the commitment to update Parliament every three months as well as the promise of clarity on the intention to negotiate an implementation period to ensure a smooth transition.
“The secretary of state’s statement on Euratom is a useful and welcome step in setting out the government’s approach in seeking to secure equivalent arrangements to those we benefit from as a member of Euratom.
“The UK industry and research facilities have been consistently clear with government about the importance of these issues since the referendum, and given the complex nature of multilateral agreements that will need to be negotiated, the recognition of the necessity of transitional arrangements and the desire for a close future association with Euratom is welcome."
It is vital government continues to prioritise these issues if there is to be a successful outcome
Tom Greatrex, chief executive, NIA
Even with a suitable transition, the NIA warned, there remained challenges if the government was to prevent the significant disruption to the industry.
The UK regulator would need to assume responsibility for Euratom’s safeguarding activities, said Greatrex.
This would entail agreeing a voluntary offer with the IAEA. Also, negotiating and ratifying new bilateral nuclear co-operation agreements with the USA, Canada, Australia, Japan and others.
Furthermore, new trading arrangements with the Euratom community and a new funding agreement for the UK to continue its world-leading work in Euratom’s fusion R&D activities, would have to be concluded, explained Greatrex, adding:
"It is vital government continues to prioritise these issues in the period ahead if there is to be a successful outcome.”