An International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) International Physical Protection Advisory Service (IPPAS) team of experts on 17 June completed a nuclear security advisory mission in Finland at the request of the Finnish Government. The mission, hosted by the Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK), was the third in Finland, which invited the first IPPAS mission in 2009 and a follow-up in 2012.

The scope of the mission included a review of the legislative and regulatory framework for the physical protection of nuclear and other radioactive material and associated facilities and activities. The team reviewed computer and information security arrangements; regulatory practices in licensing, inspections and enforcement; coordination between stakeholders involved in nuclear security; and the interface between nuclear material accounting and control and nuclear safety.

The IPPAS team also reviewed implementation of the Convention on Physical Protection of Nuclear Material (CPPNM) and its Amendment. The Amendment to the CPPNM was accepted by Finland in 2011.

The team comprised nine experts from Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, France, Hungary, Japan, Switzerland, the UK and the USA, as well as one IAEA staff member, and was led by Bernard Stauffer, Head of Nuclear & Cyber Security Section of the Swiss Federal Nuclear Safety Inspectorate (ENSI).

The team said Finland has further strengthened its nuclear security capabilities, confirming its well-established nuclear security regime and also provided recommendations and suggestions to support   enhancing nuclear security. Good practices were identified in Finland’s nuclear security regime that can serve as examples to other IAEA member states to help strengthen their nuclear security activities.

The IPPAS team met with senior officials from STUK, the Ministry of Defence, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, the Ministry of Interior, Finnish Customs, Finnish Border Guard, the National Police Board and Finnish Security and Intelligence Service. The team also observed nuclear security measures in place at the Olkiluoto 3 NPP on Finland’s southwestern coast and at Turku University Hospital Laboratory (Tykslab).  

Heather Looney, Head of the Nuclear Security of Materials and Facilities Section of the IAEA’s Division of Nuclear Security, said the team’s findings” show that since previous missions Finland has made further strides in nuclear security” and that the arrangements Finland has in place for nuclear security are aligned with the IAEA nuclear security guidance.

“Finland is committed to continuous improvement in its nuclear safety and security regime. The findings provided by the experts of the IPPAS team are important and will be used to enhance the nuclear security regime during the process to comprehensively revise Finnish nuclear related legislation”, said STUK Director General Petteri Tiippana.