AUSTRALIA, JAPAN AND PHILIPPINE GOVERNMENTS HOLD WORKSHOP ON THE CHEMICAL WEAPONS CONVENTION
The Australian Government, in partnership with the governments of the Philippines, Japan and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), are hosting a workshop on 11-12 July 2007 to raise awareness of the proliferation of chemical weapons and the possible risks that it poses to global security.
Attended by over 60 representatives from the Philippine chemical industries and government agencies, as well as representatives from Australia and Japan, the workshop aims to discuss the implementation of the requirements and prohibition set by the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) on chemical weapons and associated technologies.
The CWC is an international treaty which outlaws the development, production, possession or use of chemical weapons, and requires the destruction of existing weapons. The CWC came into effect on 29 April 2007 and has 182 member states. Australia signed the Convention in January 1993 and ratified in May 1994.
“Australia views proliferation of chemical weapons as a potentially serious threat to global security and we are committed to the eradication of this class of weapons of mass destruction,” Australian Ambassador Tony Hely said, praising the efforts of the Philippine and Japanese Governments in co-hosting the workshop. Australia and other OPCW-member countries are working closely to ensure the effective implementation of the Convention to enhance global and regional security. Ambassador Hely said that the “efforts to prevent the proliferation of such weapons are crucial in the global campaign against terrorism.” The Ambassador further noted the importance of the industry’s role in this objective, calling for closer and effective cooperation between the industry and government. Speaking at the opening ceremony, Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Angelo Reyes committed the Philippine Government to full implementation of the CWC and wished the participants a productive two days of discussions.