HC Deb 17 July 1958 vol 591 cc1435-6
48. Sir P. Roberts

asked the Prime Minister what further action Her Majesty's Government proposes to take to ensure that the Euratom Commission, through the Euratom agency, will guarantee to buy British nuclear fuel in the event of the purchase of British nuclear power stations to be erected in any of the Euratom Treaty countries.

Mr. Butler

I have been asked to reply.

The agreement under negotiation with the Euratom Commission is likely to contain similar provisions to those in the agreement between Her Majesty's Government and the Italian Government, which provides for the supply of fuel by the United Kingdom and for assistance in the manufacture of fuel elements in Italy in due course.

The rôle of the Euratom supply agency is one of the points to be taken into account in our negotiations with the Euratom Commission. The Commission has assured us that it does not intend to impose any obstacles to the development of nuclear power in its member countries, which it is its object to promote by all possible means.

Sir P. Roberts

While being grateful to my right hon. Friend for that reply which I think, as far as I can follow it, is a satisfactory one, may I ask him whether Her Majesty's Government propose to have a closer technical association with the Euratom Commission?

Mr. Butler

I am glad that my hon. Friend's apprehension is so acute and I hope our contact will be close.

Mr. Stonehouse

What guarantee will there be in the agreement that military plutonium to be extracted will be returned here?

Mr. Butler

I should want notice of that question.