The degree to which regulatory-sponsored nuclear safety research is conducted and utilised in the regulatory process varies from country to country. This statement articulates the value to efficient and effective regulation, as well as to safety, of maintaining safety research capability and expertise. It can serve as a guideline for consideration by NEA member countries in determining what safety research capability and expertise should be maintained in support of regulation and why. The intended readership is primarily nuclear safety research managers, regulatory organisations and research centres. Government authorities, nuclear power plant operators and the general public may also be interested.