SKorea, US agree to set new terms for civil nuclear cooperation for next 20 years

Associated Press

Seoul says it has concluded talks with Washington to revise the 41-year-old treaty that governs the country's commercial nuclear activities.

Ambassador for nuclear energy cooperation Park Ro-byug said Wednesday the deal would pave the way for South Korea to better manage spent nuclear fuel and improve nuclear exports.

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The revised treaty sets the terms that will govern South Korea's management of spent nuclear fuel for the next 20 years.

South Korea is still not allowed to reprocess spent nuclear fuel using U.S.-originated nuclear materials without prior consent.

But the revised deal gives more leeway to South Korea in research activities and data collection related to spent fuel.

Seoul and Washington also agreed to establish a high-level committee to discuss uranium enrichment, the key sticking point during the five-year negotiations.