§ Mr. C. Johnson
asked the Parliamentary Secretary for Science when Her Majesty's Government propose to ratify the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development Convention on Third-Party Liability in the field of nuclear energy.
§ Mr. Denzil Freeth
Although the Nuclear Installations (Licensing and Insurance) Act, 1959, covers many of the provisions of the O.E.C.D. Convention referred to by the hon. Member, amending legislation will be needed before the United Kingdom can ratify the Convention.
So far, only two O.E.C.D. countries, Spain and Turkey, have ratified. Meanwhile, a draft Convention supplementing the O.E.C.D. Convention is under discussion between a number of the signatories, including the United Kingdom.
In addition, discussions are proceeding under the auspices of the International Atomic Energy Agency with the object of concluding a Convention on similar lines to the O.E.C.D. Convention but having world-wide rather than regional application.
If all this further work can be concluded next year, as seems possible, amending legislation will be prepared to cover the whole field.