Australia Group

The Australia Group is an informal group of countries established in 1985 to help member countries to identify those exports which need to be controlled so as not to contribute to the spread of chemical and biological weapons. It was triggered by the use of chemical weapons by Iraq in 1984.

The group held its first meeting in Brussels, Belgium, in September 1989. It now has 42 members. Delegations representing the members meet every year in Paris, France.

Members include all Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) members, the European Commission, all 28 member states of the European Union, Ukraine, and Argentina.

The name comes from Australia’s initiative to create the group. Australia manages the secretariat.

In 2002, the group took two important steps to strengthen export control.

The first was the “no-undercut” requirement, which stated that any member of the group considering making an export to another state that had already been denied an export by any other member of the group must first consult with that member state before approving the export.

The second was the “catch-all” provision, which requires member states to halt all exports that could be used by importers in chemical or biological weapons programs, regardless of whether or not the export is on the group’s control lists.

During a state visit to India in November 2010, US president Barack Obama announced US support for India’s bid for permanent membership to UN Security Council as well as India’s entry to Nuclear Suppliers Group, Wassenaar Arrangement, Australia Group and Missile Technology Control Regime.

Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR)

The Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR) is an informal and voluntary partnership among 35 countries to prevent the proliferation of missile and unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) technology capable of carrying a 500 kg payload for at least 300 km.

MTCR was established in April 1987 by the G7 countries: Canada, France,Germany, Italy, Japan, Great Britain, and the United States.

The People’s Republic of China is not a member of the MTCR but has agreed to abide by the original 1987 Guidelines and Annex, but not the subsequent revisions. In 2004 China applied to join the MTCR, but members did not offer China membership because of concerns about China’s export control standards.

In 2002, the MTCR was supplemented by the International Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation(ICOC), also known as the Hague Code of Conduct, which calls for restraint and care in the proliferation of ballistic missile systems capable of delivering weapons of mass destruction, and has 119 members, thus working parallel to the MTCR with less specific restrictions but with a greater membership.

Subscribing to ‘The Hague Code of Conduct’ (HCOC) against ballistic missile proliferation, which is considered to be complementary to the missile technology control regime (MTCR), India is the newest member of MTCR with consensus of the current 34 nations. India applied for the (MTCR) in the year 2014 and has been made member on June 2016.