Iran plans to buy uranium from Kazakhstan

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TEHRAN (TCA) — Iran’s nuclear chief says the Islamic Republic has requested to buy 950 tons of concentrated uranium, also known as yellowcake, from Kazakhstan during the next three years, Iran’s PressTV news agency reported.

The Head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran (AEOI) Ali Akbar Salehi told ISNA on February 25 that the request had been made to the joint commission tasked with monitoring the implementation of the 2015 nuclear deal between Tehran and the P5+1 group of countries, known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

“This agreement will be implemented within three years and some 650 tons will enter the country directly in two consignments over two years,” he added.

The AEOI chief said the remaining 300 tons, which would enter Iran in the third year, would be turned into uranium hexafluoride (UF6) and sold back to Kazakhstan.

He said that five members of the P5+1 group have given their written approval, adding that the Islamic Republic was waiting for final answer from the UK.

Salehi also said that Iran has made requests to buy yellowcake from different countries and noted that the last batch of some 149 tons of yellowcake that Iran had bought from Russia entered the country two weeks ago.

That brought Iran’s yellowcake reserves imported to the country over the past year to 382 tons, he said.

Iran and the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council – the United States, France, Britain, Russia and China – plus Germany signed the JCPOA on July 14, 2015 and started implementing it on January 16, 2016.

Under the nuclear agreement, Iran undertook to put limitations on its nuclear program in exchange for the removal of nuclear-related sanctions imposed against Tehran.

The deal does not set limits on Iran’s supplies of uranium ore.

In its latest quarterly report last Friday, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) once again confirmed that Iran has lived up to its commitments under the landmark nuclear agreement.

Sergey Kwan

TCA