Pakistan today told the US that it has the credentials to become the full member of the nuclear materials export control regimes, including the NSG, as the two nations discussed their respective concerns over nuclear and missile developments in South Asia.
The two sides held the 8th round of Pakistan-US working group on Security, Strategic Stability, and Nonproliferation (SSS&NP), which is part of the bilateral Strategic Dialogue.
Pakistan Foreign Secretary Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry and Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Rose Gottemoeller co-chaired the meeting held here.
According to the joint statement, the delegations had a productive exchange of views on issues of mutual importance, including strategic export control regimes, nonproliferation, and regional stability and security.
The US delegation recognised Pakistan’s significant efforts to harmonise its strategic trade controls with those of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and other multilateral export control regimes as “both sides agreed on the value of Pakistan’s continued engagement, outreach and integration into the international non-proliferation regime”.
“The Pakistan delegation expressed its confidence regarding Pakistan’s credentials to become full member of the export control regimes, particularly the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) and the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR),” it said.
Pakistan’s assertion came a day after China harped on the need for consensus in the 48-member NSG, where it is reportedly, pushing for Pakistan’s entry despite US’ strong backing for India to join the elite body.
The joint statement also stated that both sides committed to continue cooperation related to export control capacity-building under the US Export Control and Related Border Security (EXBS) programme.
“Pakistan stressed the need for access to peaceful uses of nuclear technology as a socio-economic imperative.
Pakistan also indicated its interest in cooperation with the US on peaceful applications of Nuclear Science in areas such as health, agriculture and water,” it said.
The US underscored the need to commence negotiations on a treaty dealing with fissile materials for use in nuclear weapons.
Pakistan underlined its preference for a broader Fissile Material Treaty (FMT) that addresses the asymmetries in existing stocks and highlighted that its position will be determined by its national security interests and the objectives of strategic stability in South Asia.
Both sides recognised their interest in strategic stability and discussed their respective concerns over nuclear and missile developments in South Asia.