The Hon. Alexander Downer, MP
The Hon. Alexander Downer, MP

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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