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European GNSS Supervisory Authority responsible for European satellite radionavigation programmes

This summary has been archived and will not be updated, because the summarised document is no longer in force or does not reflect the current situation.

European GNSS Supervisory Authority responsible for European satellite radionavigation programmes

This Regulation confers upon a public authority the supervision of the deployment and operational phases of the European satellite radionavigation system, given its strategic nature and the need to ensure that essential public interests are adequately defended and represented.


Council Regulation (EC) No 1321/2004 of 12 July 2004 on the establishment of structures for the management of the European satellite radionavigation programmes [Official Journal L 246, 12.07.2004] [See amending acts].


European satellite radionavigation programmes are of strategic importance. In addition, given the range of applications of such programmes, the safety and security of the system are crucial.

The role of the Supervisory Authority is to manage all public interests connected with the European satellite radionavigation (GNSS) programmes and to be the regulatory authority for these. The powers of the Galileo Joint Undertaking which was closed down on 31 December 2006 were transferred to the Authority as of 1 January 2007. The Regulation assigns the Authority, which is based in Brussels for the time being, the following tasks (the list is currently being revised):

  • the responsibility - inherited from the Galileo Joint Undertaking - of managing the agreement with the economic operator charged with operating Egnos *;
  • coordination of Member States' actions in respect of the frequencies necessary to ensure the operation of the system;
  • assisting the Commission in preparing proposals related to the programmes;
  • modernisation of the system as a whole;
  • managing all aspects relating to the system's safety and security;
  • acting as European GNSS security accreditation authority;
  • managing research work useful to the development and promotion of European GNSS programmes.

The European Space Agency (ESA) will provide the Authority with technical and scientific support.

Structure of the Authority

The Authority is a body of the Community which has legal personality and may, as such, be a party to legal proceedings. It is, moreover, the owner of all the assets transferred to it by the Galileo Joint Undertaking.

The Authority has an Administrative Board composed of one representative appointed by each Member State and one representative appointed by the Commission. The Administrative Board holds an ordinary meeting twice a year.

Each Administrative Board member has one vote, and decisions are taken by a two-thirds majority of the members. The Authority also has an Executive Director, who is responsible for representing the Authority, preparing the work of the Administrative Board and implementing the Authority's annual work programme. The Administrative Board must also adopt the annual report on the activities and prospects of the Authority.

The Regulation also establishes a System Security and Safety Committee composed of one representative per Member State and one for the Commission from among acknowledged security experts. The Committee shall be consulted on and may initiate proposals on safety and security questions.

Similarly, a Scientific and Technical Committee composed of experts appointed by the Administrative Board may be tasked with delivering opinions on technical questions and making recommendations on the modernisation of the system.

The Authority's budget is adopted by the Administrative Board and implemented by the Executive Director. The budget must be balanced: the Authority's revenue includes a Community subsidy entered in the general budget of the European Union in order to ensure a balance between revenue and expenditure.

When handling personal information, the Authority is bound by the Regulation on the protection of individuals with regard to the processing of personal data.

Key terms used in the act

  • Egnos is a tripartite programme between the European Community, the ESA and Eurocontrol aimed at augmenting the American GPS and Russian GLONASS signals to ensure reliability over a broad geographical area in and around Europe. It is not dependent on Galileo, but rather complements it and paves the way for it.



Entry into force - Date of expiry

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 1321/2004



OJ L 246 of 12.07.2004

Amending act(s)

Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Regulation (EC) No 1942/2006



OJ L 367 of 22.12.2006

See also

For more information, please consult the website of the Directorate-General for Transport.

Last updated: 14.01.2008