United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Additional Protocol: Frequently Asked Questions

Are there any other countries that have signed an Additional Protocol?

As of the end of 2014, 124 of the 181 countries with safeguards agreements have brought Additional Protocols into force and an additional 21 have signed additional protocols that have not yet entered into force. The U.S. Government has joined with the IAEA to urge all countries to bring an Additional Protocol into force.

To top of page

Why did the U.S sign the Additional Protocol?

The U.S. signed the Additional Protocol to underscore the U.S. foreign policy commitment to combating the potential spread of nuclear weapons, and to demonstrate that adherence to the Model Additional Protocol by other countries would not place them at a commercial disadvantage.

To top of page

What is the difference between the U.S. – IAEA Safeguards Agreement and the U.S. Additional Protocol?

The principal differences between the U.S. – IAEA Safeguards Agreement and the Additional Protocol include the broader declaration requirements with regard to nuclear-related activities (e.g., manufacturing of nuclear components) and the expanded access permitted in the Additional Protocol to verify the accuracy and completeness of the declarations. The Additional Protocol also updates procedures for designating Agency inspectors, issuing inspector visas, and protection of safeguards information by the Agency.

To top of page

What is the difference between the Model Additional Protocol and the Additional Protocol signed by the U.S.?

The text of the U.S. Additional Protocol is identical to the Model Additional Protocol which non-nuclear-weapon States are being asked to bring into force, with the exception that one article exempts those sites and locations associated with activities of direct national security significance to the United States (similar to the national security exclusion clause in the U.S. – IAEA Safeguards Agreement).

To top of page

Who is responsible for facilitating a complementary access under the U.S. Additional Protocol?

When the IAEA requests access to an NRC licensee location, the NRC, in collaboration with other relevant Federal agencies, will facilitate the IAEA visit through implementation of additional protocol complementary access procedures. The Federal agency participation is intended to protect proprietary, sensitive, or classified information at the location. When the IAEA requests access to a location associated with a different U.S. Government Agency, that Agency will assume responsibility for facilitating the complementary access at the location.

To top of page

Where can I find more information about the Additional Protocol?

The Department of Commerce maintains a webpage dedicated to the U.S. Additional Protocol that contains useful information such as the handbooks and forms for use when submitting information, and the treaty text of the U.S. Additional Protocol:

Additional information can be found at the following websites:

To top of page

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Wednesday, February 08, 2017