U.S.-Japan Nuclear Cooperation: The Significance of July 2018

Phyllis Genther Yoshida, PhD
March 26, 2018

In July 2018, the U.S.-Japan Agreement for Cooperation Between the Government of Japan and the Government of the United States on Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy will extend automatically. Its extension means Japan can receive U.S.-origin special nuclear material, retain advance consent for reprocessing, and is bound by the non-proliferation criteria and practices set out in the agreement. It also means U.S.-Japan nuclear technology exchanges and collaborative scientific research can continue. Such agreements, known as “Section 123” Agreements for the section of the U.S. Atomic Energy Act that specifies necessary steps for engaging in international nuclear cooperation, including nine criteria non-nuclear weapon states such as Japan must meet to ensure appropriate non-proliferation safeguards are in place.

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