The Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA) is a specialized Agency within the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (ОЕСD). NEA mission is to assist its member countries in maintaining and further developing, through international co-operation, the scientific, technological and legal bases required for a safe, environmentally friendly and economical use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. To provide authoritative assessments and to forge common understandings on key issues as input to government decisions on nuclear energy policy and to broader OECD policy analyses in areas such as energy and sustainable development.
The NEA’s current membership consists of 31 countries in Europe, North America and the Asia-Pacific region – Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, United Kingdom, Hungary, Finland, France, Czech Republic, Sweden and Australia, Iceland, Canada, Mexico Norway, Republic of Korea, Russia, USA, Turkey, Switzerland and Japan. Besides, China and India are the strategic partners.
All NEA member countries, except Russia, are the members of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (ОЕСD). Russia obtained NEA membership in the framework of integration to OECD. Starting from March 2014 the activity on Russian Federation integration to OECD was phased down, instead of that OECD members agreed to develop deep cooperation with Ukraine that can joint NEA in future.
Perpetration to the membership in OECD is the way to the membership in NEA. The OECD`s current membership consists of 34 countries. The main condition of the membership in this Organization is the compliance with the principles of the market-oriented economy and democracy in the society. Chile, Estonia, Israel and Slovenia were integrated to the OECD last time. In 2007 these countries initiated the discussion of the membership and after the checking of the wide spectrum of branch policies on compliance with ОЕСD standards they were integrated to this Organization in 2010. Russian Federation, that initiated the discussion of the membership in 2011, is not accepted to the Organization yet.
Ukraine and ОЕСD
Officially, the Ukraine and ОЕСD cooperation started in 1997 when the Agreement on privileges, immunity and preferences provided by ОЕСD at the territory of Ukraine was signed between ОЕСD and Ukrainian government. After ratification of this Agreement by Verkhovna Rada in July 1991, the Ukrainian delegations started participation in meetings held by OECD for the nonmember countries. Staring from 2000 the Ukraine and ОЕСD cooperation takes place in compliance with the Annual Action Plan that is revised and agreed by the Coordination Council for ОЕСD relations. The Ministry of Economy of Ukraine was responsible for Ukraine and ОЕСD cooperation at that time.
Starting from 1997, Ukraine is an observer in ОЕСD Steel Committee (starting from 2012 – the associated member). In 2008-2011, Ukraine obtained the status of the member of ОЕСD State Control Committee, Economic and Social Development Committee and the Working Group on the Small and Medium Enterprise Development.
The cooperation with ОЕСD was strengthened as a part of European integration course of Ukraine. In January 2012, the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine officially stated that Ukraine is aimed for obtaining the status of ОЕСD full-standing member. The Action Plan, that envisages the direct participation of Ukrainian governmental authorities in the work of major ОЕСD commissions with submission of quarterly reports to the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade of Ukraine, was developed in compliance with the Cabinet Resolution No. 123-r dated February 6, 2013. This process was interrupted in spring 2013 but ОЕСD statement of March 13 demonstrates the ОЕСD good will to continue the cooperation based on the Memorandum of understanding between the Government of Ukraine and OECD on deeper cooperation signed on October 7, 2014. This document is related to the development of common policy in the field of anticorruption efforts, governmental control and regulation of certain economic sectors including by means of the involvement of Ukraine in the work of corresponding OECD authorities. Nuclear cooperation is not envisaged by this Memorandum but the list of planned cooperation can be extended based on the letter of consent of both parties.
Basic areas of cooperation between NEA member countries
Among basic cooperation areas, it is necessary to point out the following:
- Nuclear safety and regulation: to ensure high standards of safety in the use of nuclear energy, by supporting the development of effective and efficient regulation and oversight of nuclear installations, and by helping to maintain and advance the scientific and technological knowledge base.
- Radioactive waste management: to develop the safe, sustainable and societally acceptable strategies for the management of all types of radioactive materials, with particular emphasis on the management of long-lived waste and spent fuel.
- Radiological protection and public health: to assist the member countries in regulation and implementation of radiological protection system by identifying and addressing conceptual, scientific, policy, regulatory, operational and societal issues.
- Nuclear science: to help member countries identify, collate, develop and disseminate basic scientific and technical knowledge required to ensure safe, reliable and economic operation of current nuclear systems and to develop next-generation technologies.
- Nuclear energy development and use: to provide authoritative, reliable information on nuclear technologies, economics, strategies and resources to governments for use in policy analyses and decision-making, as well as on the future role of nuclear energy in a sustainable development perspective and within the broad context of national and international energy policies.
- Nuclear law and liability: to help create sound national and international legal regimes required for the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, including international trade in nuclear materials and equipment, to address issues of liability and compensation for nuclear damage.
- The Data Bank: to be the international center of reference for its member countries with respect to basic nuclear tools, such as computer codes and nuclear data, used for the analysis and prediction of phenomena in the nuclear field.
NEA/OECD membership benefits
- NEA member countries accumulated the major part of the world experience in the field of nuclear energy that is available for any member country that aims to improve the resource usage.
- The uniformity of NEA membership status allows applying a general approach to the problems, it creates the atmosphere of mutual understanding and cooperation, unlimited exchange of experience and sound solving of controversial issues. Thus, the recommendations, decisions, conventions and codes, that form the basis of international agreements and national legislation, are worked out.
- NEA is deeply engaged in scientific and technical activities in the front line of knowledge.
- NEA publications reflect the agreed propositions on key issues what provides the member countries with reliable knowledge level.
- NEA joint projects and data exchange programs allow both NEA member and nonmember countries to consolidate the efforts on research activities or on verification of research results based on common funding.
- NEA, being the ОЕСD division, has a unique possibility of nuclear energy positioning in the context of complex issues of ecologically clean development and safe power supply.
The State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine material