United States Department of State
Washington, D.C. 20520

May 11, 1999

Mr. Mitsuru Kitano
Science and Nuclear Energy Division
Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Dear Mr. Kitano:

I refer to the Implementing Agreement Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Japan ("the Implementing Agreement") Pursuant to Article 11 of Their Agreement for Cooperation Concerning Peaceful Uses of Nuclear Energy ("the Agreement for Cooperation"), signed at Tokyo November 4. 1987, and to the letters relating to the Agreement for Cooperation and the Implementing Agreement exchanged between our Governments on November 4, 1987, May 30, 1988, and October 19, 1988.

I refer also to the intended retransfer from Euratom to Japan of plutonium in the form of mixed uranium/plutonium (MOX) reactor fuel, and in particular to Article 1 (3) (a) (iii) of the Implementing Agreement pursuant to which Japan must advise the United States that the measures arranged for the international transport are in accordance with the guidelines set forth in Annex 5 of the Implementing Agreement and provide a description of such measures.

Annex 5.B of the Implementing Agreement provides, inter alia, that " [p] rior to each shipment a transportation plan documenting the specific arrangements to be implemented for the shipment will be prepared to assure ... adequate physical protection of the nuclear material to be transported. The plan will be established through coordination among the sender, recipient, and carrier, and with the cooperation and assistance of the parties, [i.e., the United States and Japan] ... ."

The Government of Japan's letter of November 4, 1987 states that during the negotiations on the Agreement and the Implementing Agreement it was confirmed that "the cooperation and appropriate assistance of the Government of the United States of America must be secured prior to each

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shipment in order to fulfill the [Annex 5) guidelines. For this purpose ... the relevant authorities of our two governments will consult fully in close contact with the sender, recipient and carrier as appropriate." The U.S. letter of May 30, 19BB reconfirmed "the commitment of the Government of the United States, emphasized during the negotiation of (Annex 5], to cooperate closely and in good faith to facilitate the return of recovered plutonium from Euratom to Japan on a predictable and reliable basis within the framework of ... the Implementing Agreement." Finally, our letters of October 18, 1988 reconfirmed that "in order to fulfill the [Annex 5] Guidelines, the Government of the United States will notify the Government of Japan prior to each shipment of the nature and scope of its cooperation and assistance to be provided."

This letter is to inform you of the nature and scope of the cooperation and assistance that the United States is providing in connection with the planned initial shipment of MOX fuel from Euratom to Japan in or after the summer of 1999.

Experts from our respective governments have consulted extensively during the development of the transportation plan for this shipment, including the threat assessment and the contingency plan that are appended to the transportation plan. U.S. experts have offered advice and comments based on their experience, and their advice and comments have been appropriately reflected in the plan. It is the judgment of U.S. experts that the final transportation plan fully satisfies the provisions of Annex 5 of the Implementing Agreement and thus constitutes a sound basis for the Government of Japan to undertake its responsibilities pursuant to the Agreement for Cooperation in connection with the planned initial retransfer of MOX fuel from Euratom to Japan.


Richard J. K. Stratford
Office of Nuclear Energy Affairs

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