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Pakistan hosted a delegation of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) for talks at the Foreign Office in Islamabad on 18-19 February 2013. The MTCR delegation was led by its current Chairman, Ambassador Joerg Ranau of Germany, and included the two incoming Chairs, Ambassador Carlo Trezza of Italy and Ambassador Roald Naess of Norway. The Pakistan side was headed by Mr. Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry, Additional Foreign Secretary.

MTCR is a multilateral export control arrangement consisting of 34 members, aimed at controlling the proliferation of missiles and related technology through the implementation of certain export control guidelines. The MTCR delegation appreciated the steps taken by Pakistan for bringing its exports controls at par with the best international standards. Both sides exchanged views on a broad range of issues and agreed to continue their interaction in the future.

On 12 February 2013, Pakistan held talks with a delegation of the Australia Group (AG) in Islamabad led by the United Kingdom. AG is a forum of 40 industrialized countries that seeks to use licensing measures to ensure that exports of certain chemicals and biological agents are not used for the spread of chemical and biological weapons.

Earlier, Pakistan held a trilateral meeting with the chairmanship Troika of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), led by the United States, which was hosted by Turkey in Ankara on 23-24 January 2013. The 47-member NSG works to prevent the proliferation of nuclear weapons through implementation of guidelines for control of nuclear and nuclear-related exports.

Pakistan also participated for the first time in an outreach meeting of the Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) on 15 June 2012 in Vienna. WA is an export control arrangement on conventional arms, and Pakistan looks forward to further engagement with this Group.

These interactions are part of Pakistan’s concerted effort to engage with the international export control regimes, in pursuance of the direction received from the National Command Authority (NCA) chaired by the Prime Minister. The NCA, in its statement of 14 July 2011, had reiterated “Pakistan’s desire to constructively contribute to the realization of a world free of nuclear weapons and to the goals of non-proliferation on the basis of equality and partnership with the international community. Accordingly, Pakistan was keen to join the four international export control arrangements.”

Pakistan’s export control regime is compatible with the guidelines of MTCR, NSG and AG. Pakistan hopes to develop a mutually beneficial relationship with all of these regimes, and would welcome cooperation in the field of peaceful uses of nuclear energy, biology and chemistry as well as space science and technology, with any member of these groups, while maintaining a nuclear deterrent in the interest of regional peace and security.

Pakistan is being viewed by the international community as a responsible nuclear weapon state that is firmly committed to the non-proliferation of WMDs and their delivery systems on a non-discriminatory basis. Pakistan welcomes the fact that all the international export control regimes have begun a process of engagement with it to advance the shared objectives of global non-proliferation.

20 February 2013

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