General Information on Conditions of Service Applicable to Fixed-Term Appointments in the Professional and Higher Categories

As a non-career organisation, the OPCW does not grant permanent contracts. Contracts carry no expectation of extension or re-employment. Contract extensions become progressively more difficult and are dependent on:  the staff member's performance measured against a rigorous performance appraisal system; the Organisation's need for the specific skills and knowledge of the staff member and availability of funds.


Net salary and emoluments paid by the OPCW are exempt from wage and income taxes in the Netherlands. 'Full salary' is comprised of net salary plus post adjustment. The post adjustment multiplier (used to calculate post adjustment) may vary in accordance with inflation and exchange rate fluctuations (Euro:US$).

Working hours

Normal working hours are 09:00 to 18:00 hours, Monday to Friday, with a one-hour lunch break (40 hours). The OPCW encourages staff members to participate in the fitness promotion programme promulgated by the Health and Safety Branch by allowing them to take two of the normal forty working hours to follow a fitness programme.

Rental Subsidy

You may qualify for a rental subsidy for the first 7 years following your arrival in The Hague. Calculation of the subsidy is based on thresholds and maximum amounts applied by the United Nations common system. Staff members who reside in the municipality of The Hague or the area within a 60 km commuting distance may be eligible for the subsidy.

Dependency allowance

Eligibility for the dependency rate of salary will be determined by the OPCW, subject to specific criteria. A dependency allowance is paid for a child under 18 years, or under 21 years if the child is in full-time attendance at an educational institution. If the OPCW determines that a child is disabled, the dependency allowance payable is twice the  amount of the established dependency allowance for a child.

Education Grant

If you are a non-Dutch citizen, you may be paid an education grant for each child, subject to specific criteria. The grant is payable up to and including the day on which a child ceases full-time attendance at an educational institution, or completes four years of post-secondary studies. The grant will not normally be paid beyond the educational year in which a child reaches the age of 25. The amount of the education grant entitlement varies, depending on whether a child attends an educational institution in or outside The Hague.

Repatriation grant

On separation from the Organisation, a repatriation grant is payable to staff members, subject to the submission of evidence of relocation away from The Hague, and subject to the fulfilment of the other relevant conditions of the Staff Regulations and Staff Rules.  The amount of the grant is based on a separate scale of separation payments.

Provident Fund

Participation in the OPCW's Provident Fund scheme is in principle compulsory. Exemption from participation may be exceptionally approved by the Director-General, for good reason. A deduction of 7.9% of your pensionable renumeration will be made through your monthly salary as your contribution to the Fund.  Currently, the OPCW contributes 15.8% of this scale as its contribution to the Fund. If you have a minimum of three months' service with the OPCW, you will be paid back the full amount held by the Fund in your name, less administrative expenses, when you leave the OPCW. If you have less than three months' service and leave for reasons other than ill health, you will be paid back your full contribution, plus interest, but minus administrative expenses.  It is not possible to 'buy-in' service in the Fund.

Agreement on the transfer of pension rights OPCW-UNJSPF

The agreement on the transfer of pension rights of participants in the United Nations Joint Pension Fund (UNSPF) and of officials in the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has entered into force as per 1 January 2013. The agreement is applicable for (1) those who join the UNJSPF member organisations within one year after separation from the OPCW and have not received payouts from the Provident Fund and (2) those who join the OPCW from the UNJSPF member organisations within one year after separation from service and have not received payouts from the UNJSPF. 

Agreement between OPCW and UNJSPF signed 2013

Annual leave

Annual leave accrues at the rate of 2.5 days per completed month.

Home leave

You may be eligible for home leave travel, subject to specific criteria. Eligible staff members are entitled to home leave travel once in every two years of qualifying service. A minimum stay of 7 days in the home country, excluding travel time, is required. For purposes of travel and entitlements, 'home' is the place with which you had the closest residential ties when you last lived in your home country prior to joining the OPCW.

Travel cost for you, your spouse and recognised dependant children are paid by the OPCW.

Sick leave

A staff member who holds a fixed-term appointment of three years or longer or who has completed three years of continuous service shall be granted sick leave up to nine months on full salary and nine months on half salary in any period of four consecutive years.

Medical examination

Your appointment is subject to satisfactory completion of a medical examination. Arrangements will be made for you to take this examination prior to your appointment.

Medical and Dental Insurance

OPCW has concluded a group medical and dental insurance contract with Vanbreda International in Antwerp which provides coverage to its staff members, their dependants and eligible family/household members, subject to specific criteria. Participation in the insurance scheme is, in principle, compulsory. Fifty percent of the cost of the insurance is borne by the OPCW.

Death and Disability Insurance

OPCW has concluded a group insurance contract for its staff members with Vanbreda International, to provide benefits in case of service incurred death or disability of an insured staff member. The full premium is paid for by the Organisation. Staff members can opt for a non-service incurred death and disability insurance at their own expense.

Travel arrangements

Once you have been medically cleared and have signed an offer of appointment, OPCW will arrange the issue of airline tickets for you and your recognised dependants. You should not purchase any tickets unless requested to do so by the OPCW.

Assignment Grant

Fixed-term staff members and their eligible family members who travel to The Hague at the Organisation's expense are eligible to receive an Assignment Grant. The Assignment Grant consists of Daily Subsistence Allowance (DSA) applicable to The Hague, The Netherlands, and is payable as follows:

  • (a)   30 days' DSA at the current rate in respect of the staff member;
  • (b)   30 days' DSA at half of the current rate in respect of each eligible family member.

Removal arrangements

Accompanied excess baggage: On initial travel to The Hague, the Organisation will reimburse you and each eligible family member for 10 kgs of accompanied excess baggage, or one flat charge, whichever is applicable.

Unaccompanied shipment: Expenses incurred for the removal of your personal effects and household goods on the basis of set maximum weight and volume limits will be covered by OPCW.

OPCW does not pay for the cost of shipping automobiles or other motorised vehicles to the Netherlands: such vehicles cannot be included with, or be considered part of, personal effects or household goods shipments. It is imperative that vehicles imported to The Hague at a staff member's own expense conform to Dutch government safety and emission control regulations.


OPCW covers the cost of in-transit insurance for a staff member's unaccompanied shipment. For a staff member with no dependants, the maximum cover is US$80,000; for a staff member with a spouse and/or a dependent child, the maximum cover is US$ 130,000.


Staff members of the OPCW shall enjoy within, and with respect to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, immunities and privileges as set in the OPCW Headquarters Agreement, Article 18.


The information provided is solely for the general guidance and information of prospective staff members and can be changed without prior notice.