France signs a tripartite agreement with CERN and Switzerland concerning protection against ionising radiation and the safety of CERN facilities

Published on 22/11/2010 • 10:32 am

Information notice


On Monday 15th November 2010, ASN Chairman André-Claude Lacoste, on behalf of the French government [1], signed an agreement with the Swiss Federal Council and the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN) [2] concerning protection against ionising radiation and the safety of CERN’s facilities.


This new agreement provides a formal framework for the authorities of the host countries to fulfil their monitoring role, whilst recognising the special nature of CERN as an international organisation. It replaces the existing bilateral agreements concerning nuclear safety and radiation protection.


The text contains four major new developments:


  • It gives the two host countries, for the first time, a common legal basis for the control of CERN. Prior to this agreement, two national legal systems were applicable;
  • It applies to the fields of nuclear safety and radiation protection, which used to be covered by separate agreements,
  • It applies to the whole of CERN’s domain: present and future installations,
  • It officialises a system of tripartite meetings to guarantee regular monitoring of the application of its provisions.


The agreement will come into force upon completion of the formalities required by the internal laws of each party. It will be published after its entry into force.


This mechanism is an original system for cooperation between the authorities of two countries for the joint running of a monitoring project.



[1] The agreement currently in force designates ASN as the representative of the French government for the handling of technical matters in relation to the agreement.


[2] CERN is an intergovernmental organisation based on a treaty between countries, whose purpose is to carry out fundamental research programmes on high-energy particles. The CERN facility is located near Geneva, on French and Swiss soil.

Date of last update : 08/06/2017