HC Deb 22 November 1968 vol 773 cc351-2W
Mr. David Watkins

asked the Minister of Technology what recent moves there have been concerning collaboration with European countries on nuclear energy matters.

Mr. Benn

The U.K.A.E.A. have been pursuing for some years a development programme on centrifuge technology for the enrichment of uranium.

Work on similar lines has taken place in the Netherlands and in the Federal Republic of Germany. The United Kingdom and these two countries have now agreed to issue the following statement:— A meeting will take place in The Hague on Monday 25th November between Ministers of the Netherlands, the Federal Republic of Germany and the United Kingdom. It will be attended by the Rt. Hon. Anthony Wedgwood Benn, M.P., Minister of Technology and by the Rt. Hon. Frederick Mulley, M.P., Minister of State. Foreign and Commonwealth Office, on behalf of the United Kingdom; for The Netherlands by Mr. de Block, Minister of Economic Affairs and Mr. de Koster, State Secretary Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and for the Federal Republic of Germany by Dr. Stoltenberg, Minister of Scientific Research and Mr. Lahr. State Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The purpose of the meeting will be to discuss the implications of recent developments in relation to the technology of the gas centrifuge method of uranium enrichment, a field in which the three countries have been particularly active; and to consider the possibility of establishing collaboratve arrangements for the exploitation of this method of uranium enrichment".