OECD Nuclear Energy Agency NEA
Finland works together with the industrialised countries within the OECD Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA). A total of 32 member countries participate in the organisation’s work, including all the Nordic countries. The Ministry of Employment and the Economy participates in NEA’s activities as Finland’s representative. The organisation’s head office is located in Paris.
Finland joined the NEA in 1976. NEA’s mission is to help its member countries to maintain and further develop, through international cooperation, the technical and legal prerequisites for the safe, environmentally sound and economical use of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.
Work at the NEA is conducted in eight task areas, mostly performed in groups and as projects. These areas are nuclear safety and regulation, nuclear energy development, radioactive waste management, radiological protection and public health, nuclear law and liability, nuclear science, the Data Bank, and information and communication.
International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA
The International Atomic Energy Agency IAEA is an autonomous UN organisation. IAEA was established in 1957 and Finland became a member in 1958. The IAEA head office is located in Vienna.
One of IAEA’s key tasks include monitoring compliance with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT). The NPT entered into force in 1970. Its aim is to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons outside the five original nuclear weapon states – the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France and China. Other objectives include furthering the goal of nuclear disarmament and promoting the peaceful use of nuclear energy. The NPT has been signed by 189 countries, while India, Pakistan and Israel have not joined the Treaty. North Korea has withdrawn from the Treaty.
IAEA’s other duties include the promotion of radiological and nuclear safety and the promotion of nuclear energy for peaceful purposes through technical assistance. Conventions on nuclear safety, nuclear waste and the physical protection of nuclear material, among others, have been concluded within the organisation’s framework. In 2022, at the request of the ministry, the Integrated Review Service for Radioactive Waste and Spent Nuclear Fuel Management, Decommissioning and Remediation (ARTEMIS) and the Integrated Regulatory Review Service (IRRS) Missions were organised by the IAEA. The Government, STUK and the waste management organisations were praised for being the first in the world to move the spent fuel disposal project towards commissioning readiness.
Finland is also involved in international cooperation aiming to improve nuclear safety in its neighbouring areas. This cooperation is mainly carried out by the Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK), which has coordinated and carried out projects to improve the Leningrad and Kola nuclear power plants and supported the Russian nuclear safety authority. The activities are funded by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs.
Further information: liisa.heikinheimo(at)gov.fi, jorma.aurela(at)gov.fi