Published On: Tue, Jun 14th, 2016

Message to Congress — Agreement for Cooperation Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the Kingdom of Norway Concerning Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy


I am pleased to transmit to the Congress, pursuant to sections 123 b. and 123 d. of the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended (42 U.S.C. 2153(b), (d)) (the “Act”), the text of a proposed Agreement for Cooperation Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the Kingdom of Norway Concerning Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy (the “Agreement”). I am also pleased to transmit my written approval, authorization, and determination concerning the Agreement, and an unclassified Nuclear Proliferation Assessment Statement (NPAS) concerning the proposed Agreement. (In accordance with section 123 of the Act, as amended by Title XII of the Foreign Affairs Reform and Restructuring Act of 1998 (Public Law 105-277), a classified annex to the NPAS, prepared by the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Director of National Intelligence, summarizing relevant classified information, will be submitted to the Congress separately.) The joint memorandum submitted to me by the Secretaries of State and Energy and a letter from the Chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission stating the views of the Commission are also enclosed. An addendum to the NPAS containing a comprehensive analysis of Norway’s export control system with respect to nuclear-related matters, including interactions with other countries of proliferation concern and the actual or suspected nuclear, dual-use, or missile-related transfers to such countries, pursuant to section 102A(w) of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 3024(w)), is being submitted separately by the Director of National Intelligence.

The proposed Agreement has been negotiated in accordance with the Act and other applicable law. In my judgment, it meets all applicable statutory requirements and will advance the nonproliferation and other foreign policy interests of the United States.

The proposed Agreement contains all the provisions required by section 123 a. of the Act, and provides a comprehensive framework for peaceful nuclear cooperation with Norway based on a mutual commitment to nuclear nonproliferation. It would permit the transfer of unclassified information, material, equipment (including reactors), and components for nuclear research and nuclear power production. Norway has no nuclear power program, and no current plans for establishing one, but the proposed Agreement would facilitate cooperation on such a program if Norway’s plans change in the future. Norway does have an active nuclear research program and the focus of cooperation under the proposed Agreement, as under the previous agreement, is expected to be in the area of nuclear research. The proposed Agreement would not permit transfers of Restricted Data, sensitive nuclear technology, sensitive nuclear facilities or major critical components of such facilities.

The proposed Agreement would provide advance, long-term (programmatic) consent to Norway for the retransfer for storage or reprocessing of irradiated nuclear material (spent fuel) subject to the Agreement to France, the United Kingdom, or other countries or destinations as may be agreed upon in writing. The United States has given similar advance consent to various other partners, including to Norway under the previous U.S.-Norway Peaceful Nuclear Cooperation Agreement that was in force from 1984 to 2014. The proposed Agreement would give the United States the option to revoke the advance consent if it considers that it cannot be continued without a significant increase of the risk of proliferation or without jeopardizing national security.

The proposed Agreement will have a term of 30 years from the date of its entry into force, unless terminated by either party on 1 year’s advance written notice. In the event of termination or expiration of the proposed Agreement, key nonproliferation conditions and controls will continue in effect as long as any material, equipment, or component subject to the proposed Agreement remains in the territory of the party concerned or under its jurisdiction or control anywhere, or until such time as the parties agree that such items are no longer usable for any nuclear activity relevant from the point of view of safeguards.

Norway is a non-nuclear-weapon State party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT). Norway has concluded a safeguards agreement and additional protocol with the International Atomic Energy Agency. Norway is a party to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material, which establishes international standards of physical protection for the use, storage, and transport of nuclear material. It is also a member of the Nuclear Suppliers Group, whose non-legally binding guidelines set forth standards for the responsible export of nuclear commodities for peaceful use. A more detailed discussion of Norway’s domestic civil nuclear activities and its nuclear nonproliferation policies and practices is provided in the NPAS and the NPAS classified annex submitted to the Congress separately.

I have considered the views and recommendations of the interested departments and agencies in reviewing the proposed Agreement and have determined that its performance will promote, and will not constitute an unreasonable risk to, the common defense and security. Accordingly, I have approved the proposed Agreement and authorized its execution and urge that the Congress give it favorable consideration.

This transmission shall constitute a submittal for purposes of both sections 123 b. and 123 d. of the Act. My Administration is prepared to begin immediately consultations with the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and the House Foreign Affairs Committee as provided in section 123 b. Upon completion of the 30 days of continuous session review provided for in section 123 b., the 60 days of continuous session review provided for in section 123 d. shall commence.


June 14, 2016.

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