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European Union CBRN Centres of Excellence


Launched in 2010, the EU Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Centres of Excellence (CoE) Initiative is a global Initiative funded and implemented by the European Union through the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument – Global Europe, as part of its goal to promote peace, stability and conflict prevention.

The Initiative is led by the European Commission’s Service for Foreign Policy Instruments, in close coordination with the European External Action Service. The European Commission’s Joint Research Centre  provides technical support to Partner Countries, while UNICRI ensures coherent and effective national, regional and international cooperation. Other relevant international and/or regional organizations and experts also contribute to the Initiative.

The Initiative, which represents the EU’s largest civilian external security programme, involves 64 countries in the following eight regions:

  • African Atlantic Façade;
  • North Africa and Sahel;
  • Central and Eastern Africa;
  • Middle East;
  • Gulf Cooperation Council;
  • Central Asia;
  • South-East Asia;
  • South-East and Eastern Europe.

All countries in each region nominate a CBRN CoE National Focal Point who has the responsibility to set up a National CBRN CoE Team composed of national experts from various bodies and ministries operating in the field of CBRN risk mitigation. The National Teams, being the key player of the Initiative, are responsible for assessing the countries' needs and promoting the coordination of CBRN policy among the relevant institutions at national level.


Objectives and activities

The aim of the Initiative is to mitigate risks and strengthen all-hazards security governance in Partner Countries of the EU following a voluntary and demand-driven approach.

EU support is provided to implement a wide range of CBRN risk mitigation projects, including needs and risk assessments, national and regional action plans, capacity building activities, legal framework reviews, tabletop and real time (including cross-border) field exercises, inter-regional exchange of best practices and lessons learnt. So far, 91 projects have been implemented and 27 are ongoing in the eight regions.


Further information

Any queries or requests for additional information regarding the implementation of these projects should be addressed to

For general information concerning the EU CBRN CoE Initiative or UNICRI, please consult the official websites: