The European Union Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence (CoE) Initiative (EU CBRN CoE)

4th Preparatory Heads of Secretariats Meeting
9-10 November 2021, Turin, Italy

Since 2018, the Preparatory Meetings have become an important part of the EU CBRN Centres of Excellence, which aims to support Partner Countries and regions in strengthening CBRN risk mitigation and an all-hazards security governance. The format of these meetings is illustrative of the Initiative as a whole: a bottom-up approach in which representatives from the 8 Regional Secretariats showcase their accomplishments and voice their ideas and vision for the way ahead. This year, the vision of Partner Countries was captured in the 2022 Interregional Roadmap that was prepared during the meeting.

During the event, the Kenyan Nuclear Regulatory Authority and UNICRI signed the Memorandum of Understanding for the official inauguration of the Regional Secretariat in Nairobi. The EU CBRN Centres of Excellence now has 8 Regional Secretariats. The other Regional Secretariats are based in: Abu Dhabi, Amman, Algiers, Manila, Rabat, Tashkent and Tbilisi.

Interregional Roadmap 2022

European Commission FPI Head of Unit, Ms. Natalie Pauwels:
“The Interregional Roadmap is a strategic document that has been elaborated with the participation of all eight regional secretariats. It includes many important objectives to be achieved collectively, in order to maximise the effectiveness of the Centres of Excellence Initiative.”

UNICRI Director, Ms. Antonia De Meo: “UNICRI is proud to be part of the EU CBRN Centres of Excellence Initiative since its start, more than 10 years ago, and to work together with key stakeholders and experts in 62 UN Member States every day.”

The EU CBRN Centres of Excellence Initiative is implemented through a network, composed of different actors from the Partner Countries, the European Commission and UNICRI. Many of them were present during the meeting.
Heads of Secretariats are designated by the Host Country of the CBRN CoE Regional Secretariat. The Head of the Regional Secretariat guides and promotes the Initiative at the regional level and contributes to the smooth functioning of the Regional Secretariat.
Regional Coordinators are United Nations Officials employed by UNICRI and deployed at the different Regional Secretariats. The Regional Coordinator coordinates the implementation of the CBRN CoE at the regional level, in close cooperation with National Focal Points and the Head of Secretariat.
National Focal Points (NFPs) are appointed by each Partner Country. Once appointed, the NFP supports the creation of a National CBRN Team, which is composed of representatives from ministries, national agencies and institutions representing relevant communities involved in CBRN risk mitigation.
On-site Technical Assistance (OSA) experts are made available by the European Commission in each region to support project implementers, strengthen cooperation with local authorities, and enhance the technical capacity as well as the visibility of the Initiative.
UNICRI supports the implementation of the Initiative, in close cooperation with International Organizations, while the European Commission (EC), in close coordination with the European External Action Service (EEAS) and with technical support from the EC Joint Research Center, oversees overall management. In some EU Delegations, EU Regional Cooperation Officers are also deployed to support the implementation of the Initiative.

©UNICRI/Freya Morales