Iran strengthens cooperation with Russia and the EU

1 May 2017

Iranian and Russian officials meeting in Moscow on 8 April underlined the need to increase nuclear cooperation. Deputy head and spokesman of the Atomic Energy Organisation of Iran (AEOI) Behrouz Kamalvandi held separate meetings with senior officials from Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom during which it was agreed that delegations from Iran and Russia would regularly exchange visits. The discussions also covered implementation of a number of projects planned in the wake of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) signed in 2015 between Iran and the P5+1 group of countries (the USA, France, the UK, Russia and China plus Germany as well as the European Union).

In January, the AEOI and Rosatom signed two cooperation agreements marking the first anniversary of JCPOA implementation. They included rebuilding Iran's Fordo fuel enrichment plant to produce stable isotopes, in line with the JCPOA, and putting the former agreements of 2014 between Iran and Russia into practice, to allow the peaceful development of atomic energy in Iran.

AEOI head Ali Akbar Salehi   and European Climate Action and Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Canete held a joint press conference in Tehran on 29 April confirming that Iran and the European Union (EU) are to start construction of an advanced nuclear safety centre in Iran in the near future. Salehi added that the centre would also extend services to regional countries.  He said Iran and the EU also planning to develop a roadmap for  a complementary research programme for nuclear research and training. This would allow Iran to use Euratom facilities in nuclear research and development. Iran and the EU plan to draw up a five-year plan for bilateral cooperation, he noted, adding that the EU would "most likely" supply the €20m ($21.8m) of credit needed for the project.

Iran and the European Commission on 18 April signed the first-ever project for nuclear safety cooperation within the framework the JCPOA. The €2.5m project aims to improve the capabilities of the Iranian Nuclear Regulatory Authority (INRA) by a preparing feasibility study for the Nuclear Safety Centre. It is the first part of a €5m action plan approved by the EU in 2016 under the Instrument for Nuclear Safety Cooperation. A further project, for stress tests at the Bushehr NPP in Iran, is scheduled to be signed in the coming weeks.


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