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China Supports the Notion of Two-Step Approach within the Nuclear Suppliers Group to Explore a Non-Discriminatory Formula Applicable to all Non-NPT States

2016/09/13

On September 13, 2016, China and India held a fresh round of arms control consultation in New Delhi. The consultation was co-chaired by Ambassador Wang Qun, Director-General of Arms Control Department of the Chinese Foreign Ministry, and Mr. Amandeep Singh Gill, Joint Secretary for Disarmament and International Security of the Indian Ministry of External Affairs. The two sides exchanged views on issues of common concern in this field.

On the question of non-NPT states' participation in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), given that it is an issue of major concern to India, China, for its part, shared with India the recent developments as it sees within the Group in relation to the question. China also shared with India its principled positions and views on the above question. In the meantime, China listened to and had the inputs from India on this issue, and indicated that it will bring such views and inputs back to the Group for its consideration. China hopes the above inputs will help facilitate the relevant discussions within the Group.

The two sides realized that the question of the non-NPT states' participation is, in essence, a multilateral issue, and can only be subject to multilateral solution by the Group. Bilateral exchanges should serve to facilitate the relevant discussions within the Group.

China pointed out that the issue of the non-NPT states' participation in the NSG raises new questions for the Group under the new circumstances, and the crux of the above question is how to address the gap between the existing policies and practices of the non-NPT states and the existing international non-proliferation rules and norms based on the NPT as the cornerstone. China wishes to see early commencement of an open and transparent inter-governmental process to undertake, in accordance with the mandate adopted by the NSG at its Seoul Plenary meeting, a comprehensive and thorough study on the question of the non-NPT states' participation in the NSG in various aspects. China has hitherto not yet taken a position on any country-specific membership in the category of the non-NPT states. And China supports the notion of two-step approach within the Group to address the above question, i.e., at the first stage, to explore and reach agreement on a non-discriminatory formula applicable to all the non-NPT states, and to proceed to take up country-specific membership issues at the second stage. China, for its part, expressed its readiness to actively participate in the above process within the Group.

The two sides also had in-depth discussions on issues related to cyber security and the work of the Conference on Disarmament.

The two sides believed that the consultation is positive, candid, pragmatic and constructive. The two sides expressed the wish to intensify their exchanges on the relevant issues. They also agreed to hold the next round of consultation in China in due course, to be decided through diplomatic channels.

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