Revised Statutes for the Euratom Supply Agency

Decision 2008/114/EC, Euratom establishing Statutes for the Euratom Supply Agency

Article 52 of the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom) Treaty

It establishes Statutes for the Euratom Supply Agency (ESA), which was directly established by the Euratom Treaty of 1957, to take account of the increase in the number of EU countries as well as to modernise the Agency’s financial rules and establish its headquarters in Luxembourg.

Article 52 of the European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom) Treaty, which seeks to guarantee, by means of a common supply policy, a regular and equitable supply of nuclear materials to users in the EU countries, is the legal basis of ESA.

Key Points

ESA is the body in the EU responsible for the management of supply and demand of:

mineral ores;
source materials (natural uranium, for example);
special fissile materials (enriched uranium and plutonium, for example).
ESA has the exclusive right to ‘conclude’ (i.e. countersign) contracts relating to the supply of nuclear materials, as above, coming from both inside and outside the EU. It has also, under the Euratom Treaty, a right of option to acquire nuclear materials.

ESA has legal personality (i.e. it is an independent entity in its own right).

Objectives and tasks


receives all contracts relating to the supply of nuclear materials within the EU; following assessment, ESA’s Director-General decides whether, or not, to grant the Agency’s countersignature, which is a necessary condition for their validity;
is notified of all contracts relating to services provided in the nuclear sector.
In addition, ESA:

provides the EU with expertise, information and advice on the nuclear materials and services market;
monitors the nuclear market and identifies market trends that could affect the security of the EU’s supply of nuclear materials and services;
publishes annually a report of its activities in the previous year as well as its work programme for the coming year, which are both submitted to the European Parliament, the Council and the European Commission;
works in close cooperation with its Advisory Committee.

The ESA may also build up its own stock of nuclear materials. It is supervised by the Commission, which has the right to issue directives (i.e. instructions) to it and veto its decisions.

Legal status and HQ


is non-profit making;
is based in Luxembourg;
may on its own initiative take any further measures concerning its own internal organisation to carry out its tasks within and outside the EU;
operates under the most extensive legal capacity available under each EU country’s laws and may, in particular, acquire or dispose of property and be a party to legal proceedings.

Director-General and staff

The ESA’s Director-General is responsible for:

ensuring the performance of the Agency’s tasks;
exercising the ESA’s exclusive right to conclude supply contracts for nuclear materials and its right of option;
day-to-day administration and management of the Agency’s resources;
keeping the Agency’s Advisory Committee regularly informed and consulting it on relevant matters;
preparing draft estimates of ESA revenue and expenditure, and execution of its budget;
conducting studies and producing reports (including an annual report) in cooperation with the Committee and their transmission to the European Parliament, the Council or the Commission.
The Director-General and ESA staff are European Commission officials and are subject to security clearance.


ESA is:

financially autonomous;
is directly governed by the financial rules which apply to the EU’s general budget (currently, Regulation (EU, Euratom) 2018/1046).
The Agency’s revenue consists nowadays, exclusively of a contribution from the EU.

ESA’s budget is adopted by the Commission and becomes final following the definitive adoption of the general budget of the EU.

Following Croatia’s accession to the EU, ESA’s capital is set at €5,856,000, subscribed by individual EU countries. Luxembourg and Malta do not take part.

Advisory Committee

EU countries (with the exception of Luxembourg and Malta) each select between 1 and 4 representatives to the Advisory Committee, in line with the Agency’s Statutes. The Committee members are appointed on the basis of their experience and expertise in nuclear materials trading or nuclear power generation or regulation.

The Committee is normally convened by ESA’s Director-General twice a year. It has to be consulted before important decisions (on matters listed in ESA’s Statutes) are adopted by the Agency’s Director-General.

The Committee assists ESA by giving opinions and providing analyses and information.

Application & Background

It has applied since March 2008 and, in its revised version following the accession of Croatia, since 1 July 2013.

For more information, see:

Euratom (European Commission)
Euratom Supply Agency (European Commission).


Council Decision 2008/114/EC, Euratom of 12 February 2008 establishing Statutes for the Euratom Supply Agency (OJ L 41, 15.2.2008, pp. 15-20)

Successive amendments to Decision 2008/114/EC, Euratom have been incorporated in the original text. This consolidated version is of documentary value only.

Consolidated version of the Treaty establishing the European Atomic Energy Community — Title II — Provisions for the encouragement of progress in the field of nuclear energy — Chapter 6 — Supplies — Article 52 (OJ C 203, 7.6.2016, p. 24)


Regulation (EU, Euratom) 2018/1046 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 18 July 2018 on the financial rules applicable to the general budget of the Union, amending Regulations (EU) No 1296/2013, (EU) No 1301/2013, (EU) No 1303/2013, (EU) No 1304/2013, (EU) No 1309/2013, (EU) No 1316/2013, (EU) No 223/2014, (EU) No 283/2014, and Decision No 541/2014/EU and repealing Regulation (EU, Euratom) No 966/2012 (OJ L 193, 30.7.2018, pp. 1-222)

Financial cooperation with non-EU countries on nuclear safety 2021-2027

Regulation (Euratom) 2021/948 establishing a European Instrument for International Nuclear Safety Cooperation complementing the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument — Global Europe

It establishes the European Instrument for International Nuclear Safety Cooperation. This runs for the duration of the European Union (EU)’s multiannual financial framework (MFF) from 2021 to 2027. It sets out the programme’s:

general and specific objectives
amount, forms and rules of EU funding.

Key Points

The regulation’s general objectives are to:

support a high level of nuclear safety, radiation protection and application of efficient and effective nuclear material safeguards in non-EU countries;
build on EU activities within relevant European Atomic Energy Community (Euratom) legislation;
encourage transparency of nuclear-related decisions in non-EU countries.

The instrument’s specific objectives are to promote:

an effective nuclear safety and radiation protection culture with the highest implementation standards and continuous improvement;
the responsible and safe management of spent fuel and radioactive waste and the decommissioning of former nuclear sites and installations;
efficient and effective nuclear material safeguards in non-EU countries.

The 7-year budget to implement the programme is €300 million (current prices). This may be used for:

procurement contracts for services or supplies
remuneration of external experts

Multiannual programmes:

provide the framework for cooperation between the EU and non-EU countries and regions;
indicate the EU’s goals in line with its own priorities, its partners’ needs and activities, and the international situation;
explain the added value of initiatives and how they avoid duplication with other programmes;
set out priority areas for financing, specific objectives, expected results and performance indicators;
are based on a dialogue with partner countries and relevant stakeholders.

The European Commission adopts:

the multiannual programmes, after consulting the European Nuclear Safety Regulators Group when relevant, revising them — and updating if necessary — at least 4 years after they are adopted;
annual action plans based on the multiannual programmes and special and support measures, which specify for each non-EU country or region the
objectives, management procedures and projects to be financed
indicative timetable, expected results and main activities

The eligibility criteria for finance from the instrument:

give priority to people and entities from countries (acceding, candidate and potential candidate) that are eligible to apply for EU membership and to its closest eastern and southern neighbours in the European neighbourhood policy and enlargement negotiations;
allow international organisations and legal entities established in a long list of countries to participate in procurement, grant and prize-award procedures.

Non-EU countries wishing to cooperate with the EU must:

have ratified the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons;
implement an additional protocol or have concluded a safeguards agreement with the International Atomic Energy Agency;
subscribe fully to the fundamental safety principles stipulated in International Atomic Energy Agency safety standards;
be party to or in the process to join the relevant conventions, such as the Convention on Nuclear Safety (see summary) and the Joint Convention on the Safety of Spent Fuel Management and on the Safety of Radioactive Waste Management;
adhere to the principle of transparency and public information.

The regulation makes it clear that EU cooperation on nuclear safety and security does not aim to promote nuclear energy.

Cooperation under the regulation:

nuclear safety regulatory authorities and technical support organisations
national agencies in charge of safe management of radioactive waste
national stakeholders responsible for accounting and controlling nuclear material
nuclear power plant operators;
strengthening regulatory framework procedures and systems
establishing effective arrangements to prevent accidents with radiological consequences
developing and implementing the safe management of spent fuel and radioactive waste
supporting practical protective measures to reduce radiation-related risks to workers and to the public
devising strategies to decommission nuclear installations, remediate former sites and recover and manage radioactive objects and material, including in the sea
creating a regulatory framework to implement nuclear safeguards
training personnel
providing equipment to nuclear plant operators in exceptional and duly justified cases.

Monitoring measures to assess the impact of the instrument are based on the following indicators:

legal and regulatory acts prepared;
design, concept or feasibility studies to achieve the highest standards of nuclear safety;
results of nuclear safety, radiation protection and effective safeguard improvement measures.

The instrument:

must be consistent with the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument — Global Europe, established by Regulation (EU) 2021/947 (see summary), EU common foreign and security policy activities and other relevant policies and programmes;
may be financially supported by other EU programmes, provided the contributions do not cover the same costs;
repeals Regulation (Euratom) No 237/2014.

Application & Background

It has applied since 1 January 2021.

Wherever nuclear energy is produced, the entire process, including disposing of radioactive waste and decommissioning power stations, must be done in a safe and secure way.

The EU uses its extensive experience in this area to help other countries achieve the highest standards of safety.

The regulation aims to increase the coherence and effectiveness of the EU’s external policies in order to implement the new international framework established by the United Nations 2030 agenda for sustainable development, the global strategy for the European Union’s foreign and security policy (see summary), the new European consensus on development (see summary) and Regulation (EU) 2021/947 establishing the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument (see summary).


Blending: using limited grants to mobilise finance from institutions and the private sector to increase the development impact of investment projects.


Council Regulation (Euratom) 2021/948 of 27 May 2021 establishing a European Instrument for International Nuclear Safety Cooperation complementing the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument — Global Europe on the basis of the Treaty establishing the European Atomic Energy Community, and repealing Regulation (Euratom) No 237/2014 (OJ L 209, 14.6.2021, pp. 79-90)


Joint statement by the Council and the representatives of the governments of the Member States meeting within the Council, the European Parliament and the Commission (OJ C 210, 30.6.2017, pp. 1-24)

Shared Vision, Common Action: A stronger Europe — A global strategy for the European Union’s foreign and security policy (June 2016, European External Action Service (EEAS))


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