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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release June 24, 1999


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) and (d)), the text of a proposed Protocol Amending the Agreement for Cooperation Concerning Civil Uses of Atomic Energy Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Canada signed at Washington on June 15, 1955, as amended. I am also pleased to transmit my written approval, authorization, and determination concerning the Protocol, and an unclassified Nuclear Proliferation Assessment Statement (NPAS) concerning the Protocol. (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), I have submitted to the Congress under separate cover a classified annex to the NPAS, prepared in consultation with the Director of Central Intelligence, summarizing relevant classified information.) The joint memorandum submitted to me by the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Energy and a letter from the Chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission stating the views of the Commission are also enclosed.

The proposed Protocol has been negotiated in accordance with the Atomic Energy Act of 1954, as amended, and other applicable law. In my judgment, it meets all statutory requirements and will advance the nonproliferation and other foreign policy interests of the United States.

The Protocol amends the Agreement for Cooperation Concerning Civil Uses of Atomic Energy Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Canada in two respects:

  1. It extends the Agreement, which would otherwise expire by its terms on January 1, 2000, for an additional period of 30 years, with the provision for automatic extensions thereafter in increments of 5 years each unless either Party gives timely notice to terminate the Agreement; and
  2. It updates certain provisions of the Agreement relating to the physical protection of materials subject to the Agreement.

The Agreement itself was last amended on April 23, 1980, to bring it into conformity with all requirements of the Atomic Energy Act and the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act of 1978. As amended by the proposed Protocol, it will continue to meet all requirements of U.S. law.

Canada ranks among the closest and most important U.S. partners in civil nuclear cooperation, with ties dating back to the early days of the Atoms for Peace program. Canada is also in the forefront of countries supporting international efforts to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons to additional countries. It is a party to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) and has an agreement with the IAEA for the application of full-scope safeguards to its nuclear program. It also subscribes to the Nuclear Supplier Group (NSG) Guidelines, which set forth standards for the responsible export of nuclear commodities for peaceful use, and to the Zangger (NPT Exporters) Committee Guidelines, which oblige members to require the application of IAEA safeguards on nuclear exports to nonnuclear weapon states. It is a party to the Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material, whereby it has agreed to apply international standards of physical protection to the storage and transport of nuclear material under its jurisdiction or control.

Continued close cooperation with Canada in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, under the long-term extension of the U.S.-Canada Agreement for Cooperation provided for in the proposed Protocol, will serve important U.S. national security, foreign policy, and commercial interests.

I have considered the views and recommendations of the interested agencies in reviewing the proposed Protocol 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 Protocol 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 Atomic Energy Act. My Administration is prepared to begin immediate consultations with the Senate Foreign Relations and House International Relations Committees as provided in section 123 b. Upon completion of the 30-day continuous session period provided for in section 123 b., the 60-day continuous session period provided for in section 123 d. shall commence.


                                 THE WHITE HOUSE,
                                 June 24, 1999.

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