House of Representatives Committees

Joint Standing Committee on Treaties

Committee activities (inquiries and reports)

Report 94 Treaties tabled on 14 May 2008

Print Preliminary Pages (PDF 81KB) < - Report Home  : Chapter 1 - >


September 2008

Canberra

© Commonwealth of Australia 2007

ISBN 978-0-642-79094-1 (printed version)

ISBN 978-0-642-79095-8 (HTML version)


Contents

Membership of the Committee
Resolution of appointment
List of abbreviations
List of recommendations

Chapter 1 Introduction
Chapter 2 Agreement with the Russian Federation on cooperation in the use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes
Chapter 3 Treaty between Australia and the United States of America Concerning
Defense Trade Cooperation

Dissenting Report - Senator Julian McGauran (Deputy Chair), Senator Simon Birmingham, Senator Michaelia Cash, Mr John Forrest MP and Mr Luke Simpkins MP
Appendix A – Submissions
Appendix B –Witnesses

Membership of the Committee

Chair

Mr Kelvin Thomson MP

 

Deputy Chair

Senator the Hon Sandy Macdonald (until 30/6/08) Senator Julian McGauran (from 1/7/08, elected Deputy Chair 2/9/08)

Members

Hon Kevin Andrews MP Senator Andrew Bartlett
(until 30/6/08)

 

Mr John Forrest MP Senator Simon Birmingham

 

Ms Jill Hall MP Senator David Bushby (until 1/7/08)

 

Ms Belinda Neal MP Senator Michaelia Cash (from 1/7/08)

 

Ms Melissa Parke MP Senator Don Farrell (from 1/7/08)

 

Mr Luke Simpkins MP Senator Scott Ludlam (from 4/9/08)

 

Mr Chris Trevor MP Senator Gavin Marshall (until 1/7/08)
  Ms Maria Vamvakinou MP Senator Louise Pratt (from 1/7/08)
    Senator Glen Sterle (until 1/7/08)
    Senator Dana Wortley

Committee Secretariat

Secretary

James Rees
(until 16/6/08)

  Siobhán Leyne
(from 16/6/08 to 8/9/08)
  Russell Chafer
(from 8/9/08)

Inquiry Secretary

Sonya Fladun

  Julia Searle

Administrative Officers

Heidi Luschtinetz
(until 6/6/08)
  Dorota Cooley

 

Claire Young
(from 2/7/08)

Resolution of appointment

The Resolution of Appointment of the Joint Standing Committee on Treaties allows it to inquire into and report on:

  1. matters arising from treaties and related National Interest Analyses and proposed treaty actions and related Explanatory Statements presented or deemed to be presented to the Parliament;
  2. any question relating to a treaty or other international instrument, whether or not negotiated to completion, referred to the committee by:
    1. either House of the Parliament, or
    2. a Minister; and

such other matters as may be referred to the committee by the Minister for Foreign Affairs and on such conditions as the Minister may prescribe.



List of abbreviations

ACF

Australian Conservation Foundation

AONM

Australian Obligated Nuclear Material

ASNO

Australian Safeguards and Non-Proliferation Office

AUA

Australian Uranium Association

CFE

Convention Forces in Europe Treaty

FOE

Friends of the Earth, Australia

IAEA

International Atomic Energy Agency

ICAN

International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons

ITAR

International Traffic in Arms Regulations

MAPW

Medical Association for Prevention of War (Australia)

MUF

Material Unaccounted For

NIA

National Interest Analysis

NPT

Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons

NWS

Nuclear Weapons State

NNWS

Non Nuclear Weapons State

RIS

Regulation Impact Statement

WILPF

Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom

List of recommendations

2. Agreement with the Russian Federation on cooperation in the use of
nuclear energy for peaceful purposes

Recommendation 1

The Committee recommends that the Australian Government not proceed with ratification of the Agreement between the Government of Australia and the Government of the Russian Federation on Cooperation in the Use of Nuclear Energy for Peaceful Purposes until:

  1. Russia’s reform process to clearly separate its civilian nuclear and
     military nuclear facilities is completed and independently verified;
  2. IAEA inspections are implemented for Russian facilities that will
    handle Australian Obligated Nuclear Materials;
  3. The Government is satisfied that the Russian Federation is complying with its obligations under the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) noting that this treaty is scheduled for review in 2010;
  4. The Government is satisfied that Russia will not subsequently abandon this treaty or other nuclear treaties;
  5. Further consideration is given to the potential ramifications for this agreement of recent political events affecting Russia;
  6. Further consideration is given to Article IX of the Agreements,
    ‘State Secrets’, and the Government is confident that this article will not undermine the intent of this agreement;
  7. Further consideration is given to the justification for secrecy of
    ‘Material Unaccounted For’; and
  8. The Australian Government discusses with the United States,
    United Kingdom, European Union, Canada and Japan, whether the problems of the past in relation to Russian nuclear material being stolen, have now been addressed satisfactorily.

Recommendation 2

The Committee reiterates its earlier recommendation, made in Report 81:

The Committee recommends that the Australian Government lobbies the IAEA and the five declared nuclear weapons states under the NPT to make the safeguarding of all conversion facilities mandatory.

Recommendation 3

The Committee recommends that Australian efforts to strengthen the resourcing of the IAEA be continued.

3. Treaty between Australia and the United States of America Concerning Defense Trade Cooperation

Recommendation 4

The Committee supports the Treaty between the Government of Australia and the Government of the United States Concerning Defense Trade Cooperation and recommends that binding treaty action be taken.

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