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Regional Seminar on UN Security Council Resolution 1540 Islamabad Concluding Remarks by Syed Tariq Fatemi, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister of Pakistan on Foreign Affairs 15 March 2017

(2017-03-15) Excellencies,
Distinguished participants,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

On behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, I wish to thank each one of you for your active participation and constructive contribution in this important event.

It would be remiss of me not to acknowledge the excellent organization of this seminar by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other Departments.

I wish to thank the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs, the Chair of the 1540 Committee and the Group of Experts for their cooperation in organizing this event.

Distinguished participants,

The two day deliberations were designed to provide a platform for deliberations, sharing of experiences and developing ideas for collaboration.

I hope the seminar has been a worthwhile experience for both our guests from abroad and local officials, academia and think tanks.

Resolution 1540 and its successor incarnations have played an important role in raising awareness about the risks of misuse of weapons of mass destruction, their means of delivery and related materials.

The 1540 Committee and its Group of Experts have developed positive synergies with states, international and regional organizations, in support of implementation objectives of the resolution. This outreach is useful for many states.

I am pleased with the richness and thoughtfulness expressed through presentations, statements and interventions from our colleagues in the Central and South Asian region as well as other guests.

Distinguished participants,

The key role of assistance and cooperation emerged as a major and cross-cutting theme during the two day proceedings. For developing countries, assistance is seen as a vital enabler in the effective implementation of the obligations that the resolution entails.

I am confident the Committee and the Group would benefit from the feedback and concrete proposals as they review the existing assistance mechanisms.

This seminar provided an important opportunity for our officials to share the wide range of measures undertaken by Pakistan in the area of export and border controls, safety and security.

I understand you will be visiting later today our Centre for Excellence on Nuclear Security. I am sure you will have a first hand opportunity to witness some of the training expertise that this Centre can offer in the area of nuclear security.

I wish to take this opportunity to reiterate Pakistan's readiness to share its expertise and experience, as well as provision of technical assistance in these areas.

We welcome the participation of international organizations in this seminar. We recognize the important role that they are playing in facilitating implementation of resolution 1540.

I encourage these and other relevant organizations to partner with 1540 Committee and developing countries, in providing technical assistance to countries upon their request.

Distinguished participants,

The dissemination of and advances in technologies as well as international trade, accompanied by risks of their unauthorized access, requires continued vigilance and collaborative efforts.

Pakistan's constructive engagement with and contribution to the Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) process, the Global Initiative to Combat Nuclear Terrorism (GICNT), OPCW, IAEA, the United Nations demonstrates our commitment towards advancement of non-proliferation goals.

Pakistan believes that control measures to address risks of WMD acquisition should not hinder the legitimate quest of the developing countries to access and use strategic materials and technologies for peaceful purposes. Pakistan therefore, advocates the need for striking a right balance between the imperatives of security and development.

Developing countries with the requisite advanced capacities, should be afforded an equal opportunity, for participation in the governance of international export control regime.

For over four decades, Pakistan has developed the necessary expertise and possesses the right qualifications, to join the export control bodies. We have therefore, sought membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), as a mutually beneficial proposition, and as a contribution to the larger goal of non-proliferation.

The Group is reviewing the legal, technical and political aspects of membership of non-NPT countries. Pakistan believes that the NSG should develop and decide on a credible, transparent and non-discriminatory criteria, so that membership applications of non-NPT states are treated at par.

I wish to conclude by reaffirming that in pursuing global non-proliferation objectives, and promoting regional as well as international security, you will find Pakistan a strong, capable and committed partner.

I wish you all a memorable stay in Islamabad!

Thank you.