CONGRESSWOMAN ELISE STEFANIK
On Tuesday, September 17, 2013, the House will consider H.R. 2449, a bill to Authorize the President to Extend the Term of the Agreement for Cooperation Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of the Republic of Korea Concerning Civil Uses of Nuclear Energy for a Period not to Exceed March 19, 2016, under a suspension of the rules. The bill was introduced on June 20, 2013 by Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA) and referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs, which ordered the bill reported by unanimous consent
H.R. 2449 authorizes the President to extend the term of the Agreement for Cooperation between the governments of the United States and South Korea concerning civil nuclear energy use until March 19, 2016. The current agreement expires March 19, 2014.
A prerequisite for virtually all nuclear cooperation between the U.S. and another country, especially commercial activity, is a civil nuclear cooperation agreement, as specified by the Atomic Energy Act of 1954 (AEA). The current agreement between the U.S. and South Korea was signed in 1974 for a period of 40 years with an expiration date of March 19, 2014. Since that time, an extensive nuclear industry has been established in South Korea, which is heavily dependent on U.S.-origin equipment, technology, and services. Negotiations for a new agreement began in 2010 but significant differences in the two countries’ positions have slowed progress.
A lapse in the agreement would prevent U.S. businesses from exporting any nuclear-related goods or services to South Korea and might also result in significant problems arising in U.S. relations with South Korea. To avoid this negative scenario, the two countries have agreed to extend the existing agreement for two years to enable the ongoing negotiations to continue. To this end, H.R. 2449 authorizes the President to extend the existing agreement for two years until March 19, 2016. It makes no other change to the existing agreement.
The CBO estimates that, “the issuance of export licenses and continued certification and reporting requirements” would cost less than $500,000 over the FY 2014 to 2018 period. Enactment would not affect direct spending or revenues.
For questions or further information contact the GOP Conference at 5-5107.