European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC)

Content of the Regulation

The Primary task of the ERIC is to establish and operate a Research Infrastructure.

This task has to be pursued on a non-economic basis. Limited economic activities are however possible.

Conditions for the Research Infrastructure:

  • necessary for European research activities
  • open to the European research community
  • added value in the development of the European Research Area and significant improvement in relevant S&T fields
  • contribution to mobility of knowledge/researchers in ERA
  • contribution to the dissemination and optimisation of the results of the activities


  • Member States
  • Third countries
  • Intergovernmental organisations

An ERIC must at all times have at least three Member States as members.

The ERIC decides on procedures for accepting new members. It has to provide fair conditions for other EU Member States to join.

Member States must jointly hold the majority of the voting rights in the assembly of members.

A state may be represented by one or more public entities or private entities with a public-service mission, e.g. research organisations or research councils.

Internal structure:

The statutory seat has to be located in an EU Member State or in a country associated to the Community research, technological development and demonstration programmes.

Operations and further sites of the ERIC may be located either in or outside the EU.

The members agree on the governance structure of the ERIC in the statutes.

The structure has to include two mandatory bodies: a members’ assembly and either a director or a board of directors.

Members’ liability:

  • Members' liability is limited to their committed contributions. There is no capital requirement.
  • Members may specify in the statutes a fixed liability above their respective contributions or unlimited liability.
  • If members' liability is unlimited, appropriate insurance to cover any risks of the construction and operation has to be taken by the ERIC.

Law applicable to the internal functioning of an ERIC:

  • Community law, in particular the ERIC Regulation
  • the law of the state where the ERIC has its statutory seat
  • the statutes, adopted in conformity with the sources of law referred to above, and any implementing rules complying with its statutes

Public procurement procedures, VAT and excise duty:

ERICs will not be bound by the procedures of the Public Procurement Directive but may set their own procurement rules based on transparency, non-discrimination and competition. This follows from Article 7.3 of the ERIC Regulation, according to which an ERIC is an international organisation within the meaning of the Public Procurement Directive ¹.

ERICs will also be exempted from paying VAT and excise duty because each ERIC will be recognised as an international body/organisation for the purposes of the Directives on VAT ²  and excise duty ³  by the country hosting its seat.

COUNCIL REGULATION (EC) No 723/2009 of 25 June 2009 on the Community legal framework for a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) acrobat[757 kB]


1. Directive 2004/18/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 31 March 2004 on the coordination of procedures for the award of public works contracts, public supply contracts and public service contracts, OJ L 134, 30.4.2004, p. 114-240

2. Council Directive 2006/112/EC of 28 November 2006 on the common system of value added tax, OJ L 347, 11.12.2006, p. 1–118

3. Council Directive 92/12/EEC of 25 February 1992 on the general arrangements for products subject to excise duty and on the holding, movement and monitoring of such products, OJ L 76, 23.3.1992, p. 1

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