The Hon. Alexander Downer, MP
The Hon. Alexander Downer, MP
 FORMER MINISTER FOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS, AUSTRALIA

Media Release

Australian Minister for Foreign Affairs, Alexander Downer
23 November 2000

China's commitment to prevent ballistic missile proliferation welcomed

I warmly welcome China's commitment, announced on 21 November, not to assist other countries in any way to develop ballistic missiles capable of delivering nuclear weapons. 

China's commitment represents a responsible step forward for international efforts to prevent missile proliferation and for the development of a more stable regional and global security environment. 

China's parallel commitment to improve and reinforce its export control systems, including by publishing a comprehensive export control list of missile-related items will be an important tool in its efforts to prevent missile proliferation. 

As a member of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), Australia firmly supports efforts to reduce missile proliferation and has been a strong advocate for broader adherence, including in the Asia-Pacific region, to measures to limit the spread of missile technology and the export of long-range missiles. 

My just completed visit to North Korea provided me with a valuable opportunity to reinforce this message at senior levels in the DPRK.

Australia will continue to lobby actively for the imposition of effective controls on exports of missile-related equipment and technology, including through its membership of the MTCR.  We urge all countries to impose and implement such controls with vigour. 

Media inquiries:
James Baker (Ministerial) 02 6277 7500
Matt Francis (Departmental) 02 6261 1555 

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