International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) is the world’s leading international governmental forum for scientific and technical cooperation in area of the peaceful use of nuclear technology.
The international organization was created on 29 July 1957 as an independent establishment in frames of the United Nations Organization system. At the present time IAEA participants are 134 countries. Headquarters is located in Vienna (Austria). IAEA central establishments are located in Vienna International Center.
According to their Statute, "the Agency shall endeavor to rapid and wide use of nuclear power for peace, health and prosperity throughout the world".
It should be noticed, that words "nuclear power" here are used in a broad sense. It is not limited by the nuclear power generation only. Significant part of the IAEA programs is dedicated to usage of other nuclear methods based on use of radioisotopes and irradiations.
Transfer of technology
More then 55% of assistance provided by the Agency to developing countries is connected with transfer of nuclear methods for them to use in agriculture, medicine, industry and hydrology. Besides, 16% are related to radiation protection and radioactive wastes handling and 29% to nuclear power generation are, and almost half of the assistance is used for NPP safety improvement.
Nuclear power has a great destructive force and it must be safe. According to the Statute, the IAEA is authorized to develop special international criteria and norms for use in the Agency’s activity and for countries that are agree to accept them. The IAEA do this works in close cooperation with other international institutions such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Labor Organization (ILO).
Main IAEA safety standards for radiation protection, Principles and rules of NPP safety, as well as Fundamentals and safety standards in the field of radioactive waste handling are safety standards approved at international level that all States members of the IAEA can use in their national regulations.
The Agency develops standards that let to make assessment if any type of production is appropriately protected against radiation, and issues instructions on how to handle nuclear materials.
Non-proliferation of nuclear weapon
IAEA is the only world’s international inspector on issues related to nuclear safeguards and control in area of civil nuclear programs. Purpose of the control is to prevent transfer of nuclear materials used at nuclear facilities located in 70 countries of the world to military purposes.
IAEA can provide information about all nuclear technology aspects: the Agency govern activity of International Centre for Theoretical Physics in Trieste (Italy) and possesses three laboratories for researches on main directions of nuclear energy use (in agriculture and food production), on radiation medicine and radiobiology.
IAEA structure and financial resources
IAEA’s decision-making bodies are Board of Governors and General Conference. General Conference includes representatives of all states members of IAEA. At the present time, the Board of Governors includes 35 members, 13 of them are assigned by the Board and 22 of them are elected by the General Conference. Secretariat ruled by General Director is obliged to perform implementation of IAEA program after its approval by the Board and the General Conference.
Board of Governors
Board of Governors is usually has meetings five times per year: in March and June, in September – right before and after annual session of the General Conference – and directly after session of its Committee on technical assistance and cooperation in December. The Board considers report materials, program and budget of the Agency and submits reports on the issues to the General Conference and considers applications for membership in the IAEA. Besides, the Board approves Safeguards Agreements and publication of IAEA safety norms, and it is also authorized to name a General Director who will be approved by the General Conference.
General Conference consisting of all states members is convened once per year to consider, among other issues, report of the Board of Governors for the previous year, to approve reports, program and budget and any applications for membership in the IAEA. It is authorized to request the Board to provide reports on any issues related to the IAEA functions.
IAEA Secretariat, employing 2212 professionals and support staff, implements programs and activities approved by the Agency’s decision-making bodies. The Secretariat is headed by the General Director, who is main administrative executive officer and is appointed for a four year term.