Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has signed a decree on aligning nuclear power legislation in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). In a statement on Medvedev's official website on 22 April, the government said national laws in some countries of the CIS vary in relation to the civilian nuclear energy industry and the construction of nuclear power facilities.
The decree enables the Russian government to ratify a draft agreement on harmonisation of nuclear industry standards that was approved by the CIS Economy Committee in December.
Dated 20 April, the document acknowledges that "certain differences have emerged in the technical regulation of the peaceful use of atomic energy", the government said. It therefore "establishes the principles" according to which the various approaches may be aligned in terms of regulation, standardisation, accreditation and metrological support, it added.
It was drafted by Russian state nuclear corporation Rosatom in accordance with the Framework Program of Cooperation of the CIS Countries in the Field of the Peaceful Use of Atomic Energy for the period up to 2020, which was signed in Minsk in May last year.
The government said "mutual understanding" of the need to establish and implement mandatory requirements for products and processes related to ensuring the security of nuclear power facilities at all stages of their life cycle, and a "common ability to assess technical solutions" are "of paramount importance". Addressing the differences in atomic energy laws that affect implementation of joint projects "requires a systematic approach", it said.
Also known as the Russian Commonwealth, the CIS is a regional organisation formed during the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Nine out of the 15 former Soviet Republics are member states, and two are associate members. The nine are Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The associate members are Turkmenistan and Ukraine.