Access to the travaux préparatoires

The Energy Charter Secretariat has maintained the archives of the Energy Charter Process since its inception. In particular, the Secretariat keeps the documentary travaux préparatoires relating to the negotiation of the European Energy Charter, the Energy Charter Treaty, its related Protocols (1991-1994) and the Trade Amendment (1994-1998). In addition, the Secretariat has recordings of some of the meetings (1991-1994) of the negotiating groups (the audio travaux préparatoires).  

The travaux préparatoires (both audio and documentary) are accessible to the public under the policy approved by the Energy Charter Conference on 1 November 2016. They can be consulted in digital format at the Energy Charter Secretariat, subject to the following arrangements.

Rule 1 - Access

Applications for access must be made in writing in English or Russian at least two weeks in advance at

The request should specify: the article(s) or topic(s) to be consulted; if the enquirer is a government official, an academic, an industry representative or a practitioner; and if the consultation relates to a (potential) dispute under the Energy Charter Treaty or is for academic purposes.

An acknowledgement of receipt will be sent electronically, including a proposed date for visiting the Secretariat. All applications will be registered in a database kept within the Legal Services of the Secretariat for statistical purposes.

Rule 2 - Copying

All enquirers may consult all of the documentary and audio travaux préparatoires. In addition, all enquirers may print a copy of any documents that do not expressly contain a confidentiality/restriction stamp on it. Only enquirers acting as representatives of a Contracting Party or Signatory of the ECT may print a copy of documents with a confidentiality/restriction stamp on it.

At the express request of an arbitral tribunal or judicial court, the Secretariat will produce a copy of a requested document with a confidentiality/restriction stamp on it for inspection by the arbitral tribunal or the court only.

Enquirers acting as representatives of a Contracting Party or Signatory of the ECT will be required to show an official ID identifying them as a government official or an authorisation issued by a Contracting Party or Signatory to the individual enquirer or his/her law firm. 

No charge is made if the number of copies requested is no more than 10 pages. Additional photocopies are charged at €0.50 per page. 

The use of digital cameras or mobiles is prohibited in the consultation room.

Rule 3 – Use of copied documents

Copies of documents (other than those already published officially) of the travaux préparatoires may be used for the purposes of publication and dissemination subject to prior authorisation by the Secretary General. They may also be used before judicial courts, arbitral tribunals and/or a mediation/conciliation process.

Rule 4 – Lodging of publications

Visitors are required to forward to the Energy Charter Secretariat, free of charge, a copy of any article, thesis or publication of theirs based on the use of the travaux préparatoires.

Rule 5 – Implementation of the guidelines

All enquirers are assumed to have familiarised themselves with the guide and are required to comply with it.