India joins Australia Group: 43-member body controls export of equipment, technologies used for chemical, biological weapons
India on Friday joined the Australia Group (AG), which seeks to ensure that exports do not contribute to the development of chemical or biological weapons.
New Delhi: After gaining entry into two export control regimes — MTCR and Wassenaar, India on Friday joined the Australia Group (AG), which seeks to ensure that exports do not contribute to the development of chemical or biological weapons.
"On 19 January 2018 India formally became the 43rd member of the Australia Group (AG), the cooperative and voluntary group of countries working to counter the spread of materials, equipment and technologies that could contribute to the development or acquisition of chemical and biological weapons (CBW) by states or terrorist groups," the AG said in a release.
Reacting to India's entry to the group, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said it would be "mutually beneficial and to help in non proliferation".
He said the AG membership will help in establishing India's credentials further.
India joined the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) in 2016 and the Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) in 2017.
The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies is a multilateral export control regime.
Wassenaar Arrangement plenary begins: After MTCR, regime one of three other export control regimes India hopes to enter
The plenary session of the Wassenaar Agreement commenced in Vienna on Thursday. The group is one of the four export-control groups India is looking to be a member of.
India is likely to enter the missile technology control regime this week, a move that will boost the country's efforts to purchase Predator drones from the US and export its high-tech missiles to friendly nations.
India may join the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) "very quickly" as there are no longer any major obstacles and things are moving positively, a senior US official has said.