The European nuclear industry recognises that the liberalisation of the European energy market has led to the deregulation of electricity generation and supply and that diversity of national regulations could seriously distort competition. Undoubtedly, harmonizing regulations is the best way of ensuring that the industry can evolve within a stable legal framework. Consequently, nuclear license holders supported the work of the Western European Nuclear Regulators Association (WENRA) on the harmonization of European safety standards for existing nuclear power plants, as well as for waste and decommissioning. This support led to the creation, within FORATOM, of the ENISS (European Nuclear Installations Safety Standards) Initiative, in May 2005, in Brussels. The principal mission of ENISS is to bring together decision-makers, operators and specialists from the nuclear industry with national regulators in order to identify and possibly agree upon the scope and substance of harmonized safety standards. ENISS currently represents the nuclear utilities and operating companies from 17 European countries with nuclear power programme. ENISS above all provides the nuclear industry with the platform that it needs to express its views, provide expert input and interact fully with regulators throughout the harmonization process. ENISS first task has been to present a common industry position with regards to the Safety Reference Levels that WENRA has proposed. By engaging in constructive debate with WENRA and playing a dynamic role in the process, ENISS also defends the industry’s interests in a proactive way. The work of ENISS is a good example of how dialogue and results-oriented participation with stakeholders can help identify optimal solutions to the problems that our industry faces today. Another task of ENISS is to strengthen the industry influence in the revision work of the IAEA Safety Standards as well as in the European Directive on Nuclear Safety.

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