Nuclear regulatory authority
The Hungarian Atomic Energy Authority (HAEA) is a public administration body acting in the field of peaceful applications of atomic energy with a specified scope of tasks and authority, being independent of both organizational and financial points of view.
The HAEA’s scope of competence comprises the regulatory oversight of nuclear installations, radioactive waste repositories and the safety and security of radioactive material in order to guarantee the peaceful and safe use of atomic energy serving the interests of the public as stipulated in laws, safety regulations and resolutions of the HAEA. Radiation protection (such as the oversight of X-ray machines), general building authority and general building oversight in the safety zone of nuclear installations and radioactive waste repositories and the most important oversight tasks related to safeguards also fall within the scope of the competences of the HAEA. In the framework of its licensing activities, HAEA shall confirm through licensing whether safety requirements are met by the licensees and HAEA authorizes the licensee to carry out activities in relation to the use of atomic energy.
Nuclear Power Plant
There are four VVER-440/213 (PWR) reactor units operated by the MVM Paks NPP Ltd. (500 MWe generated power by each unit). HAEA granted 20 years service life extension for all four units.
The Budapest Research Reactor is a VVR-type (water-cooled, water-moderated) reactor, operated by the Hungarian Academy of Sciences Centre for Energy Research.
The Training Reactor of the Budapest University of Technology and Economics is a light water moderated and cooled reactor of 100 kW nominal thermal power.
Under Hungary's Act on Atomic Energy, the government needs to obtain a decision-in-principle from the Parliament in order to start any preparatory activity that could lead to the construction of a new nuclear power plant. On 30 March 2009, the Parliament gave a decision-in-principle with more than 90% of the votes in support of it.
After this, the preparation for the construction of the new units was started. The activities included preparations for obtaining the environmental license and the site licence. A survey was also initiated to determine the possible suppliers for the construction of the new units and the demand for the necessary manpower.
In 2012, the Board of the MVM Ltd. took a decision to establish a company to continue the tasks. The preparations for construction of the new units are coordinated by Paks II. Ltd (project company) and the minister without portfolio responsible for the design, construction and installation of the two new nuclear power plant units of Paks.
As a first step the site investigation and evaluation program had to be developed and submitted to the HAEA (Hungarian Atomic Energy Authority) for approval. The Paks II. Ltd. submitted the site investigation and evaluation license in April 2014 and the HAEA granted the license on 14th November 2014, with conditions.
Thereafter on 2 April 2015, the Geological Research Program began, in compliance with the approved site investigation and evaluation program and was completed on 31th December, 2016.
Based on the site investigation and evaluation results, Paks II. Ltd. has compiled a site license application, which was submitted to the HAEA on 27th October, 2016. The site license was issued by the HAEA on March 27th 2017 with conditions.
Map of Hungary indicating the location of Paks NPP:
Radioactive waste and spent fuel management
The Public Limited Company for Radioactive Waste Management (PURAM) is responsible for the operation of the existing radioactive waste and spent fuel management facilities and the preparation for the final disposal of high level waste and the decommissioning of nuclear facilities. A Central Nuclear Financial Fund was established by the Act on Atomic Energy to finance the tasks of radioactive waste and spent fuel management. The Fund is constituted by the payments of those institutes where the radioactive waste is generated.
The Spent Fuel Interim Storage Facility is situated at Paks, next to the plant site of the Paks Nuclear Power Plant connected to its south part.
The National Radioactive Waste Repository is in Bátaapáti is the disposal of the low and intermediate level waste originating from the Paks Nuclear Power Plant.
The Radioactive Waste Treatment and Disposal Facility (for institutional radioactive waste) is in operation at Püspökszilágy.
Main national laws and regulations
Main national laws and decrees
Act CXVI (1996) on Atomic Energy (Nuclear Law, establishing responsibilities for different areas).
Government Decree 227/1997. (XII. 10.) on the type, conditions and sum of the liability insurance or other liability financial coverage concerning atomic damage (Civil nuclear liability).
Law-decree 9 of 1972 on the promulgation of the agreement concluded between the Hungarian People’s Republic and the International Atomic Energy Agency for the application of safeguards in connection with the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, signed in Vienna on 6 March 1972.
Act XC of 1999 on the confirmation and promulgation of the Additional Protocol signed in Vienna on 26 November in 1998 in connection with the agreement for the application of the safeguards concerning the treaty on non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, concluded between the Republic of Hungary and the International Atomic Energy Agency and signed in Vienna on 6 March 1972.
Decree of the Minister of transport, telecommunication and energy 11/2010. (III.4.) KHEM on the rules of accountancy for and control of radioactive materials, and on the corresponding data provisions(implementing IAEA safeguards).
Government Decree 144/2011. (VII. 27.) on the regulation of international transfer of nuclear and nuclear dual use items (import and export controls of nuclear material and items).
Law-decree 8 of 1987 on the promulgation of the convention on physical protection of nuclear materials(security principles, including physical protection of nuclear material and facilities and protection of sensitive information).
Regulations related to the planned new nuclear units at Paks
Act II of 2014 on the promulgation of the agreement about the cooperation in the field of peaceful utilization of nuclear energy between the Hungarian Government and the Government of the Russian Federation (IGA).
Act XXIV of 2014 on the promulgation of the agreement about the state loan provided to the Hungarian Government in order to finance the construction of the nuclear power plant in Hungary between the Hungarian Government and the Government of the Russian Federation (Financial IGA).
Act VII of 2015 on the project on the sustainment of Paks NPP and on the modification of related regulations.
Government decree 93/2017 (IV.12) on the amendment of the Government decree 152/2014. (VI. 6.) of the tasks and competence of the government members.
Main Regulations in the field of Nuclear Power
Government Decree 112/2011. (VII. 4.) on the scope of activities of the Hungarian Atomic Energy Authority in connection with its international obligations including the European Union, its authority and penalizing rights, the assignments of its co-authorities and on the Scientific Committee assisting the HAEA’s activity (regulation for establishing an authorization system, responsibilities of the operator, inspection and enforcement).
Governmental Decree 118/2011 (VII.11.) on the nuclear safety requirements for nuclear facilities and the procedures of the Hungarian Atomic Energy Authority in nuclear safety regulatory matters.
Annex No.1: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 1, Authority procedures applied to nuclear facilities.
Annex No. 2: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 2, Management systems of nuclear facilities.
Annex No. 3: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 3, General requirements for the design of nuclear power plants.
Annex No. 3a: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 3a.
Design requirements for nuclear power plants.
Annex No. 4: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 4, Operational safety requirements of nuclear power plants.
Annex No. 5: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 5, Design and operation of research reactors.
Annex No. 6: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 6, Design and operation of spent fuel storage facilities.
Annex No. 7: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 7, Site assessment of nuclear facilities.
Annex No. 8: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 8, Decommissioning of nuclear facilities.
Annex No. 9: Nuclear Safety Code Volume 9, Requirements for the construction of new nuclear facilities.
Annex No. 10: Definitions of nuclear safety codes.
Decree of the Minister of Health 16/2000. (VI. 8.) on the execution of certain provisions of Act CXVI of 1996 on Atomic Energy associated with radiation protection (radiation protection, including protection of workers public and environment).
Government decree 215/2013. (VI. 21.) on the designation, activity and funding of the organization performing certain tasks in relation with radioactive waste and spent fuel (radioactive waste and spent fuel management, including storage and disposal, decommissioning, including funding and institutional control of mining and milling).
Government Decree 190/2011. (IX. 19.) on physical protection requirements for various applications of atomic energy and the corresponding system of licensing, reporting and inspection(physical protection).
Act LXXXI of 2015on the promulgation and inland application of Appendixes “A” and “B” of the European Agreement about the International Public Road Transportation of Dangerous Goods.
Decree of the Minister of National Development 51/2013. (IX.6.) on the transportation, carriage and packaging of spent nuclear fuel.
Decree of the Minister of Transportation, Telecommunication and Water 14/1997. (IX. 3.) on the transportation, shipment and packaging of radioactive materials(transport of radioactive material).
Govt. Decree 155/2014. (VI. 30.) Korm. on the safety requirements for facilities ensuring interim storage or final disposal of radioactive wastes and the corresponding authority activities.
Govt. Decree 487/2015. (XII. 30.) Korm. on the protection against ionizing radiation and the corresponding licensing, reporting (notification) and inspection system.
Govt. Decree 489/2015. (XII. 30.) Korm. on monitoring radiation conditions relevant for public exposure of natural and artificial origin and on the scope of quantities obligatory to be measured.
Govt. Decree 490/2015 (XII. 30.) Korm. on the reports and interventions regarding missing, found or seized nuclear and other radioactive materials and other actions pertaining to radioactive materials following their report
Govt. Decree 184/2016. (VII.13.) Korm. on the registration of civil engineering-technical experts, civil engineering designers, technical building inspectors and responsible construction supervisors.
Ministerial decree 5/2015. (II.27.) BM of the Minister of the Interior on specific fire safety requirements associated with the application of atomic energy and on the method of their enforcement in the practice of authorities.
The whole legal framework is available on HAEA’s website:
Last updated in August 2018