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Statement by Ambassador Chen Xu, Head of the Chinese Delegation, at the Seventy-Fourth Session of the Executive Council

(From Chinese Embassy in Netherlands)

2013/10/08

Mr. Chairman,

Please allow me to welcome you back to the Chair of the Executive Council. The Chinese delegation will work closely with you and with other delegations in a joint effort for the successful completion of the deliberation of all the agenda items at this session.

The Chinese delegation wishes to thank the Director General for his comprehensive work report, as well as the vice-chairpersons of the Council for their respective reports. The Chinese delegation also associates itself with the statement made by the Iranian Ambassador on behalf of the NAM States Parties and China. Now, please permit me to elaborate China's positions as regards the agenda items.

Firstly, China welcomes the depositing by Syria of the instrument of accession to the Convention, and commends the adoption by the Council at its 33rd Meeting of the decision on the destruction of the Syrian chemical weapons. China holds the view that the destruction of the Syrian chemical weapons should proceed in parallel with a political solution to the crisis in Syria, and is looking forward to the OPCW playing its unique role in the verification and destruction of the Syrian chemical weapons. China is prepared to provide its experts and offer its financial contributions for the mission. Meanwhile, China believes that while it represents an important progress in the universality of the Convention, the accession to the Convention by Syria highlights in particular the fact that CW destruction constitutes the object of the Convention and the chief task under it. China hopes that the OPCW will continue to ensure resources and inputs for CW destruction.

Secondly, the destruction of the chemical weapons abandoned by Japan in China admits of no further delay. One may say that in comparison with CW stockpiles, Japanese ACWs pose even more harm in reality, and their destruction is thus more urgent. China expresses its regret and anxiety over the delays in the destruction process, and urges Japan to implement the Convention and the relevant Council decision dutifully, and work to complete the process as early as possible. With a pragmatic and constructive approach, China has been having cooperation with Japan on issues concerning the destruction of Japanese ACWs. From September 9 to 13, at the joint invitation by China and Japan, a Council delegation visited, for the first time, the Haerbaling Japanese ACW destruction facilities, in order to obtain first-hand information on the progress of the destruction process there. China will brief the Council on the visit separately.

Thirdly, the 2014 OPCW Program and Budget will be of a great significance for the future implementation of the Convention. The Program and Budget should continue to ensure adequate and effective inputs in CW destruction and its verification, while providing for the rational planning for work on such key areas as industry verification and international cooperation. My delegation believes that the Office of Strategy and Policy should work, within the scope of its mandate, on the strategic planning as regards the enhancement of the implementation of the Convention and of the work of the Secretariat itself. Issues such as the Knowledge Management Centre, outreach and education and the Contingency Operations Team remain controversial. The Chinese delegation calls on all parties to show flexibility and, through thorough consultations, reach consensus as soon as possible. My delegation will continue to follow developments on those issues.

Fourthly, international cooperation constitutes an important integral part of the full and effective implementation of the Convention. The CSP at its session this year will review the implementation of the Decision on the Components of an Agreed Framework for the Full Implementation of Article XI, which it adopted at its 16th session. The Council at this session will consider the report on this subject which the Secretariat will submit to the Conference. China fully endorses the efforts made by States Parties and the Secretariat in the area of international cooperation in the last two years, and is, in the meantime, in favour of a continual increase of inputs in this field, and of vigorous explorations conducted of relevant measures to be taken, including a plan of action. That will be conducive to improving the quality of the developing nations' implementation of the Convention while heightening their enthusiasm for it, and to enhancing the universality of the Convention.

Mr. Chairman,

On the agenda of this session is the important item of the Appointment of the Director-General. China wishes to commend the highly productive work which Mr. Üzümcü has carried out ever since he took office, and supports the recommendation by the Council for the renewal of his appointment. It is hoped that the Director-General will, as he always has, continue to do a good job in managing the work of the Secretariat and that relating to the implementation of the Convention in all aspects. China will continue to offer full support and cooperation to him in his work.

My delegation requests the circulation of this statement as an official document of this session.

Thank you, Mr. Chairman.

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