CONVENTION FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT
OF A EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY
OF THE AGENCY
ESTABLISHMENT OF THE AGENCY
The purpose of the Agency shall be to provide for and to promote, for exclusively peaceful purposes, cooperation among European States in space research and technology and their space applications, with a view to their being used for scientific purposes and for operational space applications systems :
INFORMATION AND DATA
EXCHANGE OF PERSONS
Member States shall facilitate the exchange of persons concerned with work within the competence of the Agency, consistent with the application to any person of their laws and regulations relating to entry into, stay in, or departure from, their territories.
ACTIVITIES AND PROGRAMMES
FACILITIES AND SERVICES
LAUNCHERS AND OTHER SPACE TRANSPORT SYSTEMS
USE OF FACILITIES, ASSISTANCE TO MEMBER STATES, AND SUPPLY OF PRODUCTS
The organs of the Agency shall be the Council, and the Director General assisted by a staff.
|1.||The Council shall be composed of representatives of the Member States.|
|2.||The Council shall meet as and when required, either at delegate level or at ministerial level. The meetings shall be held at the Agency's Headquarters unless the Council decides otherwise.|
|3.||a.||The Council shall elect for two years a Chairman and vice-chairmen, who may be re-elected once for a further year. The Chairman shall direct the proceedings of the Council and ensure the preparation of its decisions; he shall inform the Member States of proposals for the execution of an optional programme; he shall assist in coordinating the activities of the organs of the Agency. He shall maintain liaison with the Member States, through their delegates to the Council, on general policy matters affecting the Agency and shall endeavour to harmonise their views thereon. In the interval between meetings, he shall advise the Director General and shall obtain from him all necessary information.|
|b.||The Chairman shall be assisted by a Bureau, the composition of which shall be decided by the Council and which shall be convened by the Chairman. The Bureau shall advise the Chairman in the preparation of Council meetings.|
|4.||When the Council meets at ministerial level it shall elect a chairman for the meeting. The next ministerial meeting shall be convened by him.|
|5.||In addition to the functions set forth elsewhere in this Convention and in accordance with its provisions, the Council shall :|
|a.||as regards the activities and programme referred to in Article V, 1 a (i ) and (ii:)|
|i.||approve the activities and programme by a majority of all Members States; decisions to this effect may only be changed by new decisions adopted by a two-thirds majority of all Member States;|
|ii.||determine, by a unanimous decision of all Member States, the level of resources to be made available to the Agency for the coming five-year period;|
|iii.||determine, by a unanimous decision of all Member States, towards the end of the third year of each five-year period and after a review of the situation, the level of resources to be made available to the Agency for the new five-year period starting at the end of this third year;|
|b.||as regards the activities referred to in Article V, 1 a (iii ) and (iv ):|
|i.||define the policy to be followed by the Agency in pursuit of its purpose;|
|ii.||adopt, by a two-thirds majority of all Member States, recommendations addressed to Member States;|
|c.||as regards the optional programmes referred to in Article V, 1 b :|
|i.||accept each programme by a majority of all Member States;|
|ii.||determine, as appropriate, in the course of their implementation, the order of priority of programmes;|
|d.||adopt the annual work plans of the Agency;|
|e.||as regards the budgets as defined in Annex II :|
|i.||adopt the annual general budget of the Agency by a two-thirds majority of all Member States;|
|ii.||adopt each programme budget by a two-thirds majority of the participating States;|
|f.||adopt, by a two-thirds majority of all Member States, the Financial Regulations and all other financial arrangements of the Agency;|
|g.||keep under review expenditure on the mandatory and optional activities referred to in Article V, 1;|
|h.||approve and publish the audited annual accounts of the Agency;|
|i.||adopt the Staff Regulations by a two-thirds majority of all Member States;|
|j.||adopt, by a two-thirds majority of all Member States, rules under which authorisation will be given, bearing in mind the peaceful purposes of the Agency, for the transfer outside the territories of the Member States of technology and products developed under the activities of the Agency or with its help;|
|k.||decide on the admission of new Member States in accordance with Article XXII;|
|l.||decide on the arrangements to be made in accordance with Article XXIV in the event of a Member State's denouncing this Convention or ceasing to be a member under Article XVIII;|
|m.||take all other measures necessary for the fulfilment of the purpose of the Agency within the framework of this Convention.|
|6.||a.||Each Member State shall have one vote in the Council. However, a Member State shall not have the right to vote on matters concerning exclusively an accepted programme in which it does not take part.|
|b.||A Member State shall have no vote in the Council if the amount of its arrears of contributions to the Agency in respect of all activities and programmes covered by Article V in which it participates exceeds the assessed amount of its contributions for the current financial year. Moreover, if the amount of a Member State's arrears of contributions to any one of the programmes under Article V, 1 a (ii ) or V, 1 b in which it participates exceeds the assessed amount of its contributions to that programme for the current financial year, then that Member State shall have no vote in the Council on questions relating exclusively to that programme. In any such case, the Member State may nevertheless be authorised to vote in the Council if a two-thirds majority of all Member States considers that the non-payment of contributions is due to circumstances beyond its control.|
|c.||The presence of delegates from a majority of all Member States shall be necessary to constitute a quorum at any meeting of the Council.|
|d.||Except where this Convention provides otherwise, decisions of the Council shall be taken by a simple majority of Member States represented and voting.|
|e.||In determining the unanimity or majorities provided for in this Convention, account shall not be taken of a Member State which has no vote.|
|7.||The Council shall adopt its own rules of procedure.|
|8.||a.||The Council shall establish a Science Programme Committee, to which it shall refer any matter relating to the mandatory scientific programme under Article V, 1 a (ii ). It shall authorise that Committee to take decisions regarding that programme, subject always to the Council's functions of determining the level of resources and adopting the annual budget. The terms of reference of the Science Programme Committee shall be determined by the Council by a two-thirds majority of all Member States and in accordance with this Article.|
|b.||The Council may establish such other subordinate bodies as may be necessary for the purpose of the Agency. The establishment and terms of reference of such bodies, and the cases in which they have powers of decision, shall be determined by the Council by a two-thirds majority of all Member States.|
|c.||When a subordinate body examines a question relating exclusively to one of the optional programmes referred to in Article V, 1 b, non-participating States shall have no vote unless all participating States decide otherwise.|
DIRECTOR GENERAL AND STAFF
|1.||a.||The Council shall, by a two-thirds majority of all Member States, appoint a Director General for a defined period and may, by the same majority, terminate his appointment.|
|b.||The Director General shall be the chief executive officer of the Agency and its legal representative. He shall take all measures necessary for the management of the Agency, the execution of its programmes, the implementation of its policy and the fulfilment of its purpose, in accordance with the directives issued by the Council. He shall have authority over the establishments of the Agency. He shall, in regard to the financial administration of the Agency, act in accordance with the provisions of Annex II . He shall make an annual report to the Council, and this report shall be published. He may also submit proposals concerning activities and programmes as well as measures designed to ensure the fulfilment of the Agency's purpose. He attends meetings of the Agency without the right to vote.|
|c.||The Council may postpone the appointment of the Director General for such period as it considers necessary either upon the entry into force of this Convention or in the event of a subsequent vacancy. In this event, it shall appoint a person to act in his place, who shall have such powers and responsibilities as the Council may determine.|
|2.||The Director General shall be assisted by such scientific, technical, administrative and clerical staff as he may consider necessary, within the limits authorised by the Council.|
|3.||a.||Senior management staff, as defined by the Council, shall be appointed and may be dismissed by the Council on the recommendation of the Director General. Appointments and dismissals made by the Council shall require a two-thirds majority of all Member States.|
|b.||Other staff members shall be appointed and may be dismissed by the Director General, acting on the authority of the Council.|
|c.||All staff shall be recruited on the basis of their qualifications, taking into account an adequate distribution of posts among nationals of the Member States. Appointments and their termination shall be in accordance with the Staff Regulations.|
|d.||Scientists who are not members of the staff and who carry out research in the establishments of the Agency shall be subject to the authority of the Director General and to any general rules adopted by the Council.|
|4.||The responsibilities of the Director General and the staff in regard to the Agency shall be exclusively international in character. In the discharge of their duties they shall not seek or receive instructions from any government or from any authority external to the Agency. Each Member State shall respect the international character of the responsibilities of the Director General and the staff, and shall not seek to influence them in the discharge of their duties.|
|1.||Each Member State shall contribute to the costs of the activities and programme referred to in Article V, 1 a and, in accordance with Annex II, to the common costs of the Agency, in accordance with a scale adopted by the Council, by a two-thirds majority of all Member States, either every three years at the time of the review referred to in Article XI, 5 a (iii ), or whenever the Council, by a unanimous vote of all Member States, decides to establish a new scale. The scale of contributions shall be based on the average national income of each Member State for the three latest years for which statistics are available. Nevertheless,|
|a.||no Member State shall be required to pay contributions in excess of twenty-five percent of the total amount of contributions assessed by the Council to meet these costs;|
|b.||the Council may, by a two-thirds majority of all Member States, decide in the light of any special circumstances of a Member State to reduce its contribution for a limited period. In particular, when the annual per capita income of a Member State is less than an amount to be decided by the Council by the same majority, this shall be considered as a special circumstance within the meaning of this provision.|
|2.||Each Member State shall contribute to the costs of each optional programme covered by Article V, 1 (b), unless it has formally declared itself not interested in participating therein and is therefore not a participant. Unless all participating States decide otherwise, the scale of contributions to a given programme shall be based on the average national income of each participating State for the three latest years for which statistics are available. This scale shall be revised either every three years or whenever the Council decides to establish a new scale in accordance with paragraph 1. However, no participating State shall, by the operation of this scale, be required to pay contributions in excess of twenty-five percent of the total amount of contributions to the programme concerned. Nevertheless, the percentage contribution to be made by each participating State shall be equivalent to at least twenty-five percent of its percentage contribution established under the provisions of paragraph 1, unless all the participating States decide otherwise when adopting the programme or during the execution of the programme.|
|3.||The statistical systems to be used for establishing the scales of contribution referred to in paragraphs 1 and 2 shall be the same, and shall be determined in the Financial Regulations.|
|4.||a.||Any State that was not a party to the Convention for the establishment of a European Space Research Organisation or to the Convention for the establishment of a European Organisation for the Development and Construction of Space Vehicle Launchers and which becomes a party to this Convention shall make, in addition to its contributions, a special payment related to the current value of the assets of the Agency. The amount of this special payment shall be fixed by the Council by a two-thirds majority of all Member States.|
|b.||Payments made in accordance with the provisions of sub-paragraph a shall be used to reduce the contributions of the other Member States unless the Council decides otherwise by a two-thirds majority of all Member States.|
|5.||Contributions due under this Article shall be paid in accordance with Annex II.|
|6.||Subject to any directions given by the Council, the Director General may accept gifts or legacies to the Agency provided that they are not subject to any conditions inconsistent with the purpose of the Agency.|
- The Agency may, upon decisions of the Council taken by unanimous votes of all Member States, cooperate with other international organisations and institutions and with Governments, organisations and institutions of non-member States, and conclude agreements with them to this effect.
- Such cooperation may take the form of participation by non-member States or international organisations in one or more of the programmes under Article V, I a (ii) and V, I b. Subject to the decisions to be taken under paragraph 1, the detailed arrangements for such cooperation shall be defined in each case by the Council by a two-thirds majority of the States participating in the programme in question. These arrangements may provide that a non-member State shall have a vote in the Council when the latter examines matters pertaining exclusively to the programme in which that State participates.
- Such cooperation may also take the form of according associate membership to non-member States which undertake to contribute at least to the studies of future projects under Article V, 1 a (i) . The detailed arrangements for each such associate membership shall be defined by the Council by a two- thirds majority of all Member States.
LEGAL STATUS, PRIVILEGES AND IMMUNITIES
- The Agency shall have legal personality.
- The Agency, its staff members and experts, and the representatives of its Member States, shall enjoy the legal capacity, privileges and immunities provided for in Annex I.
- Agreements concerning the Headquarters of the Agency and the establishments set up in accordance with Article VI shall be concluded between the Agency and the Member States on whose territories the Headquarters and establishments are situated.
- The Council may recommend to Member States amendments to this Convention and to Annex I thereto. Any Member State that wishes to propose an amendment shall notify the Director General thereof. The Director General shall inform the Member States of any amendment so notified at least three months before it is discussed by the Council.
- Any amendment recommended by the Council shall enter into force thirty days after the Government of France has received notification of acceptance from all Member States. The Government of France shall notify all Member States of the date of entry into force of any such amendment.
- The Council may, by a unanimous vote of all Member States, amend any of the other Annexes to this Convention, provided that such amendments do not conflict with the Convention. Any such amendment shall enter into force on a date to be decided by the Council by a unanimous vote of all Member States. The Director General shall inform all Member States of any such amendment and of the date on which it will enter into force.
- Any dispute between two or more Member States, or between any of them and the Agency, concerning the interpretation or application of this Convention or its Annexes, and likewise any dispute referred to in Article XXVI of Annex I, which is not settled by or through the Council, shall, at the request of any party to the dispute, be submitted to arbitration.
- Unless the parties to the dispute decide otherwise, the arbitration procedure shall be in accordance with this Article and with additional rules to be adopted by the Council by a two-thirds majority of all Member States.
- The Arbitration Tribunal shall consist of three members. Each party to the dispute shall nominate one arbitrator; the first two arbitrators shall nominate the third arbitrator, who shall be the chairman of the Arbitration Tribunal. The additional rules referred to in paragraph 2 shall determine the procedure to be followed if the nominations have not taken place within a specified time.
- Member States or the Agency, not being parties to the dispute, may intervene in the proceedings with the consent of the Arbitration Tribunal if it considers that they have a substantial interest in the decision of the case.
- The Arbitration Tribunal shall determine its seat and establish its own rules of procedure.
- The award of the Arbitration Tribunal shall be made by a majority of its members, who may not abstain from voting. This award shall be final and binding on all parties to the dispute and no appeal shall lie against it. The parties shall comply with the award without delay. In the event of a dispute as to its meaning or scope, the Arbitration Tribunal shall interpret it at the request of any party to the dispute.
NON-FULFILMENT OF OBLIGATIONS
Any Member State which fails to fulfil its obligations under this Convention shall cease to be a member of the Agency on a decision of the Council taken by a two-thirds majority of all Member States. The provisions of Article XXIV shall apply in such a case.
CONTINUITY OF RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS
On the date when this Convention enters into force, the Agency shall take over all rights and obligations of the European Space Research Organisation and of the European Organisation for the Development and Construction of Space Vehicle Launchers.
SIGNATURE AND RATIFICATION
- This Convention shall be open until 31 December 1975 for signature by the States which are members of the European Space Conference. The Annexes to this Convention shall form an integral part thereof.
- This Convention shall be subject to ratification or acceptance. Instruments of ratification or acceptance shall be deposited with the Government of France.
- After the entry into force of the Convention and pending the deposit of its instrument of ratification or acceptance, a signatory State may take part in the meetings of the Agency, without the right to vote.
ENTRY INTO FORCE
- This Convention shall enter into force when the following States, being members of the European Space Research Organisation or the European Organisation for the Development and Construction of Space Vehicle Launchers, have signed it and have deposited with the Government of France their instruments of ratification or acceptance: the Kingdom of Belgium, the Kingdom of Denmark, the French Republic, the Federal Republic of Germany, the Italian Republic, the Kingdom of the Netherlands, Spain, the Kingdom of Sweden, the Swiss Confederation and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. For any State ratifying, accepting or acceding to this Convention after its entry into force, the Convention shall become effective on the date of deposit by such State of its instrument of ratification, acceptance or accession.
- The Convention for the establishment of a European Space Research Organisation and the Convention for the establishment of a European Organisation for the Development and Construction of Space Vehicle Launchers shall terminate on the date of the entry into force of this Convention.
- After the entry into force of this Convention, any State may accede thereto following a decision of the Council taken by a unanimous vote of all Member States.
- A State that wishes to accede to this Convention shall notify the Director General, who shall inform the Member States of this request at least three months before it is submitted to the Council for decision.
- Instruments of accession shall be deposited with the Government of France.
The Government of France shall notify all signatory and acceding States of:
|a.||the date of deposit of each instrument of ratification, acceptance or accession;|
|b.||the date of entry into force of this Convention and of amendments covered by Article XVI, 2;|
|c.||the denunciation of the Convention by a Member State.|
- After this Convention has been in force for six years, any Member State may denounce it by notifying the Government of France, which shall notify the other Member States and the Director General. The denunciation shall take effect at the end of the financial year following that during which it was notified to the Government of France. After the denunciation has taken effect, the State concerned shall remain bound to honour its due share of the payment appropriations corresponding to approved contract authority used both under the budgets to which it was contributing for the year in which the denunciation was notified to the Government of France, and under previous budgets.
- A Member State denouncing the Convention shall indemnify the Agency for any loss of property on its territory, unless a special agreement can be concluded with the Agency for the continued use of this property by the Agency or the continuation of certain activities of the Agency on the territory of the said State. Any such special agreement shall determine in particular to what extent and on what conditions the provisions of this Convention shall continue to apply, after the denunciation has taken effect, to the continued use of this property and the continuation of these activities.
- A Member State denouncing the Convention, and the Agency, shall jointly determine any additional obligations to be borne by the said State.
- The State concerned shall retain the rights it has acquired up to the date on which the denunciation takes effect.
- The Agency shall be dissolved if the number of Member States becomes less than five. It may be dissolved at any time by agreement between the Member States.
- In the event of dissolution the Council shall appoint a liquidation authority, which will negotiate with the States on whose territories the Headquarters and establishments of the Agency are situated at the time. The legal personality of the Agency shall subsist for the purposes of the liquidation.
- Any surplus shall be distributed among those States that are members of the Agency at the time of the dissolution, in proportion to the contributions actually made by them from the dates of their becoming parties to this Convention. In the event of a deficit, this shall be met by the same States in proportion to their contributions as assessed for the financial year then current.
Upon the entry into force of this Convention, the Government of France shall register it with the Secretariat of the United Nations in accordance with Article 102 of the Charter of the United Nations.
Last update: 8 April 2002