The UK Government aims to maintain a close and effective association as possible with the EU’s nuclear body after Brexit.
That’s according to a Written Ministerial Statement released by Greg Clark, which suggests this is to maximise continuity with current Euratom arrangements, ensure the UK maintains a leading role in European nuclear research and allow the country’s industry to continue operating.
The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) also says a close relationship in the future is needed to make sure the UK has a skilled workforce able to cover decommissioning, the ongoing operation of existing facilities and the construction of new projects.
The UK’s specific objectives in respect of the future relationship are to seek a close association with Euratom’s Research and Training Programme, maintain open trade arrangements for nuclear goods and products and cooperate closely on nuclear safety.
Greg Clark said: “Whatever the outcome of the negotiations with the EU, it is vital that Government pursues all options for providing certainty for the civil nuclear industry that it will be able to continue its operations, including that the UK has a safeguards regime that meets international standards by the end of March 2019 and that necessary international agreements are in place.”
Tom Greatrex, Chief Executive of the Nuclear Industry Association, said: “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.”