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Applying to export uranium and controlled ores
Under Regulation 9 of the Customs (Prohibited Exports) Regulations 1958, you must have permission to export:
- uranium oxide concentrate or uranium ore concentrate (UOC)
- controlled ores and other nuclear material
All uranium produced in Australia is exported for use in nuclear energy generation or research reactors. It can only be used for peaceful purposes in countries Australia has approved.
Our export controls reflect Australia’s stringent nuclear safety and security requirements, including Australia’s non-proliferation obligations.
Which materials are subject to export controls?
Controlled materials include:
- uranium (including UOC)
- depleted uranium (DU) transport containers
- other materials such as laboratory reagents containing 500 parts per million (ppm) (0.05% per cent by weight) or more of uranium and thorium combined
- other nuclear materials including plutonium, americium, curium, and californium
- controlled ores or concentrates containing 500 ppm or more of uranium and thorium combined, including:
- tantalum concentrates
- tantalum glass
Which countries can receive UOC?
Australian UOC can only be exported to countries that have a nuclear cooperation agreement with Australia. Countries must also have a Comprehensive Safeguards Agreement and Additional Protocol with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
Applying to export UOC
There is no standard application form for this process. Before you begin, please contact us to discuss the nature of your proposal. This will avoid processing delays and help you to meet the application requirements. For example, you’ll need to provide:
- background on the exporting company
- benefits arising from current and future operations
- benefits arising from the export opportunity
- project details on the UOC source (e.g. a copy of the mining lease or other evidence)
- information on the status of Commonwealth and state approval processes, including environmental safeguards
- a list of compliant countries you propose to export to
- justification for how long you require the permission (usually 10 years)
You must also have a permit to possess or transport nuclear material from the Australian Safeguards and Non-Proliferation Office (ASNO).
Submitting an application to export UOC
Please send your hardcopy application to: Senator the Hon Matthew Canavan, Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, PO BOX 6100, Parliament House, Canberra ACT 2600.
If you are issued with an export permission, you must:
- obtain approval from us for each shipment of UOC
- adhere to strict safeguards, reporting and other conditions determined by the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia
- advise us of any changes to mining proposals
Applying to export controlled ores, residues and concentrates, and other nuclear materials
Applications for Controlled Ores and Other Nuclear Materials are managed in the Export Permissions Portal (EPP).
If you haven’t applied for mineral export permission before, please email us to request access to the EPP. Include your full name and company.
Your application must include all of the following:
- a brief background on the exporting company and the export opportunity
- a description, including the source, of the material
- a chemical data sheet (or similar)
- gross weight of the material
- uranium and thorium content, or content of other nuclear material
- proposed export quantity
- export arrangements (expected dates and whether it is likely to be a one-off or longer term arrangement)
- commercial benefits from the proposed export (approximate export value)
Complete the application form
Provide an end-user statement
We require a statement from the intended end-user(s) of the material. We encourage you to use the end-user template [60KB DOCX].
An end-use statement must include details on:
- ownership and operations of the end-user
- how the end-user will use and dispose of the Australian material (including advice on whether there will be any re-exports)
- how the nuclear material (thorium and uranium) will be used and disposed of, including possible:
- final disposal as irrecoverable waste
- storage as recoverable waste
- extraction of the nuclear material for any nuclear purpose
- re-export in any form
- ownership and location of the waste containing nuclear material
- government controls and arrangements for storage or disposal of nuclear material content
All intended traders of the material (not just the manufacturer or processor) must provide an end-user statement.
Exports to China
If you are exporting a controlled ore to China (directly or indirectly), additional information is required. To satisfy Australia’s reporting obligations in Annex D of the Australia-China Nuclear Transfer Agreement, please include:
- receiver name
- address and contact details of the senior representative (including all import agents and end-users)
- intermediate processor in a third country (if applicable)
- projected monthly delivery schedule
Submitting applications to export controlled ores, residues and concentrates, and other nuclear materials
Please email a scanned copy of your application to: Manager, Mining & Investment Section, Resources Division at Uranium.IndustrySection@industry.gov.au
Applications are considered on a case-by-case basis.
Permissions to export controlled materials are granted by the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia or an authorised person in the department.
We treat all information, including our initial discussion with you, as commercial-in-confidence.
Last updated: 8 December 2020
Content ID: 42901