The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA) on 21 April signed a partnership agreement with Algeria's Atomic Energy Commission (Comena) under which Comena researchers will have access to the CEA's research reactors and their ancillary facilities. The agreement was signed under the International Centre on Research Reactors (ICERR) programme sponsored by the International Atomic Energy Agency.
CEA Chairman Daniel Verwaerde said on 27 April that research reactors and other facilities of the CEA will be available to Comena teams for education, training and field projects. The agreement will enable Comena researchers to train and develop human resources efficiently and cost-effectively, CEA said. The ICERR programme will also contribute to improving the use of existing research reactors and equipment in Algeria and to the development and deployment of innovative nuclear technologies while promoting cooperation.
In 2015, the CEA was the first research institution in the world to receive the ICERR label issued by the IAEA, following a rigorous selection process. The objective of the ICERR programme is to assist IAEA member states to rapidly access the infrastructure of existing research reactors to carry out nuclear research and development and strengthen their scientific capabilities.
The CEA previously signed several ICERR agreements with Moroccan, Tunisian and Slovenian research organisations in September 2016 and Indonesia in March 2017.