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In 1957 Bulgaria ratified the Statute of the International Atomic Energy Agency and became one of the states-founders of this organization. This fact required the establishment of a specialized state body to co-ordinate the activities connected with the use of atomic energy in the country and in the international community. The Committee for Peaceful Use of Atomic Energy within the Council of Ministers was established by a Decision No: 603/4.06.1957 of the Government. The controlling and co-ordinating activities of the Committee were directed towards the scientific research activities, medicine, industry and agriculture.

Chairmen of the Committee during that period have been: Ivan Mihailov, Valko Chervenkov, Mincho Neychev, Ivan Popov and Nacho Papazov.


By Ordinance No: 31/15.03.1975 of the Council of Ministers the tasks of the Committee were supplemented by regulatory functions. The Committee was established as a state and public body to co-ordinate and regulate the implementation of the tasks of the peaceful use of atomic energy, the adherence to the rules for safe operation of the NPP and the implementation of the internal and external dosimetry control.


A Directorate on Nuclear Safety was established by Decree No: 1305 of the State Council. The regulatory activities of the Committee were supplemented with the control over the institutions and organizations operating nuclear facilities and using nuclear material.


The National Assembly adopted the Act on the Use of Atomic Energy for Peaceful Purposesand established the new Committee on the Use of Atomic Energy for Peaceful Purposes within the Council of Ministers, comprising in its structure the Inspectorate on the Safe Use of Atomic Energy. Managerial staff from ministries and other institutions involved in the use of atomic energy was included in the committee staff.


On 27 July 1995 the National Assembly adopted the Act on amendments and supplements to the AUAEPP from 1985. This Act regulated the free market rules in the use of sources of ionizing radiation, as well as established a fund “Safe Storage of RAW’ and a fund “Decommissioning of Nuclear Facilities”. Two consultative councils were established within the Committee: the Council on the Safety of Nuclear Facilities and the Council on Radiation Protection. The national legislation was approximated in compliance with the provisions of the Vienna Convention on Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage, the penalties for infringement of the regulations in the field of atomic energy were augmented.


On 22 August 2002 by a Council of Ministers decree the Committee on the Use of Atomic Energy for Peaceful Purposes (CUAEPP) is transformed into a Nuclear Regulatory Agency (NRA) and the Rules for Procedure of the NRA are approved as well.
The Council of Ministers appointed Dr. Sci. Prof. Emil Vapirev, who has been chairman of the CUAEPP as of November 2001, as chairman of the Agency. According to the Rules for Procedure of the NRA, the chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Agency is an independent specilaized body of the executive power, which exercises the state regulation of the safe use of nuclear energy and sources of ionizing radiation and the safe management of radioactive waste and spent fuel.


The new Chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Agency Dr. Sergey Tzotchev was appointed by the Council of Ministers as of October 20, 2004.

After 1973 chairmen of the CUAEPP have been: Stefan Vassilev, Kostadin Kostadinov, Ivan Pandev, Yanko Yanev, Luchezar Kostov, Vladimir Hristov, Gueorgui Kastchiev, Robert Poppitz, Emil Vapirev.