The organisation supporting France’s nuclear team
AIFEN is also known under its English name as the French nuclear industry. It was established out of the wish of the French nuclear stakeholders. By partnering together, they intended to enhance abroad the French nuclear team’s exposure.
Founded by the French government in July 2011, the French nuclear governmental Steering Committee (known by its French acronym CSFN) pointed out the urge to rely on a better coordination as to promoting the French nuclear know-how at an international level. The CSFN Export task group promptly identified the need to gather the wide scope of businesses representing the French nuclear team abroad and specifically its Small and Medium-sized Entreprises (SMEs).
On 4 July 2013, AIFEN was established by the CFSN with the means to reach out to its high ambition: to support the French nuclear team abroad to become the entrance gate for French industrialists towards their international business development. To depict this gateway, AIFEN designed the Nuclear Expertise from France logo, which is a tailored brand illustrating the French nuclear team. And of course, the AIFEN’s main achievement is to organize, every two years, the World Nuclear Exhibition (WNE), the meeting point of the global nuclear community.
The expertise of AIFEN members spans the full range of nuclear activities: from the front-end to the back-end of the fuel cycle including R&D, design and construction, engineering, manufacturing, operations and maintenance, waste management, decommissioning & dismantling, and nuclear standards. As experts of their technology in the nuclear field, their knwow-how leads them to supply other cutting-edge sectors such as medical applications, aeronautics, aerospace industry, defence, I&C, shipbuilding, virtual reality and so on.
France’es third-largest industry, the nuclear industry has a unique know-how, worldwide renowned for its quality and the mastering of the full nuclear value-chain. And AIFEN’s mission is to support this expertise to the international nuclear community. AIFEN gathers French companies of all sizes and coordinates the international actions of its member organizations (GIIN, PFCE, PFME, and PNB). The Board members who are in charge of AIFEN’s strategy are:
Nuclear Expertise from France
AIFEN created the Nuclear Expertise from France logo to give France’s nuclear team a standard-bearer and a specific marker for its brand. The logo helps unite French nuclear companies of all sizes and in every area through the use of a single slogan and graphic charter.
The label standardises the visual identity of French expertise and increases its visibility on an international level. Its nuclear industry’s boldface names are easily recognised abroad and have close ties to major institutions, but SMEs and mid-market companies, which indirectly contribute to the reputation of larger stakeholders, are identifiable through major efforts implemented as part of an export strategy.
Only the AIFEN’s members and partner organisations (GIIN, PFCE, PFME, and PNB) can use the Nuclear Expertise from France logo, which they do in order to signify their membership on France’s nuclear team.
The World Nuclear Exhibition
Until recently, although nuclear technology is a cutting-edge field, no international stage brought all the industry stakeholders together and represented their industrial expertise. Against this backdrop, AIFEN created the World Nuclear Exhibition to showcase the global nuclear community every two years (even-numbered years).
The WNE has become the nuclear industry’s unmissable event for promoting the growth of sales. It brings together the industry’s global players and represents the diversity of skills that make up the nuclear industry, especially the expertise of its small, medium, and mid-market companies. As an international and business-oriented platform, the WNE covers the full gamut of civil nuclear industry activities. The exhibition hall is the keystone of these international meetings, but the event also features a programme of high-level round tables and exhibitor workshops, while the WNE Awards ceremony singles out the best companies.
The first WNE took place in October 2014. The figures for the second, in June 2016, speak for themselves: over 20,000 professionals (visitors and exhibitors) from 63 countries attended the three-day exhibition, which featured 17 national pavilions. International participation rose by 50%. The success of WNE 2016 bolsters its position as a key event for presenting the diversity of the global nuclear industry’s cutting-edge expertise.
Comité Stratégique de la Filière du Nucléaire
As France’s third-leading industry, the nuclear sector includes nearly 2,500 companies and boasts world-renowned know-how. Within this context, the French government set up the CSFN to coordinate the actions of all the nuclear industry’s players in the areas they share in common, such as innovation, training, and exports.
France’s nuclear industry has achieved globally recognised excellence over the years. Here are some key figures:
- Nearly 220,000 employees.
- Over 2,500 companies.
- Yearly turnover of nearly €46 billion and almost €15 billion in value added.
- R&D investment ranking it fourth among innovative industries.
- Over two-thirds of the companies export their savoir-faire, and the growth outlook is bright.
The industry’s commitments are organised around four main themes
The industry’s four main goals and commitments revolve around:
- Organising the industry
- Developing the industry
In the 1970s, France’s nuclear industry emerged to foster the country’s energy independence. In February 2011, the Nuclear Policy Council decided to set up the CSFN (Comité Stratégique de la Filière nucléaire—Nuclear Industry Strategic Committee), which aims to strengthen ties and partnerships between the industry’s players, including:
- The Nuclear Safety Authority
- The public authorities and the related ministries
- Nuclear operators and research institutions (EDF, CEA, AREVA, and ANDRA)
- Nuclear operators’ industrial suppliers
- Certification and qualification bodies
- Associations, organisations (AIFEN, GIIN, etc.), and regional groups ( Nuclear Valley, etc.)
- Trade groups and labour unions.
For more information, download the French brochure Cartographie de la filière nucléaire enquête sur la situation 2010 – CNI – Filière nucléaire