Nuclear Suppliers Group: Civil Services Mentor Magazine: June - 2016

Nuclear Suppliers group

India is trying to get into the coveted Nuclear suppliers group (NSG). The 48-member NSG is a key multi-lateral body regulating nuclear trade. Nuclear Suppliers Group is concerned with reducing nuclear proliferation by controlling the export and re-transfer of nuclear weapon development materials. Nuclear suppliers group is alsoconcerned with improving safeguards and protection on existing materials. NSG came into existence as a responce to India's first nuclear test at Pokhran in may 1974. India's test demonstrated that nuclear weapon can be made through non-weapons specific nuclear technology. Nations already signatories of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) saw the need to further limit the export of nuclear equipment, materials or technology. Another benefit was that non-NPT and non-Zangger Committee nations, then specifically France, could be brought in.

A series of meetings in London from 1975 to 1978 resulted in agreements on the guidelines for export, these were published as INFCIRC/254 (essentially the Zangger "Trigger List") by the International Atomic Energy Agency. Listed items could only be exported to non-nuclear states if certain International Atomic Energy Agency safeguards were agreed to or if exceptional circumstances relating to safety existed. The "Trigger List" remained unchanged until 1991, although the Zangger list was regularly updated. However major changes came only after first gulf war. In this war Iraqi weapons bring forward the need for tightening the screw on export of so-called dual-use equipment. Agreement of changes was published as the "Dual-use List" in 1992. A regular series of plenary meetings was also arranged as was the regular updating of the two key lists.

India is not the signatory of Non proliferation treaty of nuclear weapons. The Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons is an international treaty whose objective is to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons and weapons technology. Treaty also aims to promote cooperation in the peaceful uses of nuclear energy, and to further the goal of achieving nuclear disarmament and general and complete disarmament. Only four UN members are not the signatory of Non proliferation treaty, they countries include India, Pakistan, Israel and South Sudan. India is also one of the few countries outside the NSG that has ‘full-cycle’ expertise on nuclear technology. The NSG would therefore be strengthened if a country with the capabilities of India, which intends to take part in international nuclear commerce, is admitted. Nuclear suppliers group gave India specific waiver in 2008. While deciding NSG looked into India's long-standing and impeccable non-proliferation credentials would strengthen norms that incentivise good non-proliferation behaviour and vice-versa.

While taking any country into the Nuclear supplers group, group needs to look into certain criteria's. These factors which needs to be taken into account before membership are given below:

  • The ability to supply items (including items in transit) covered by the annexes to Parts 1 and 2 of the NSG Guidelines;
  • Adherence to the Guidelines and action in accordance with them;
  • Enforcement of a legally based domestic export control system which gives effect to the commitment to act in accordance with the Guidelines;
  • Adherence to one or more of the NPT, the Treaties of Pelindaba, Rarotonga, Tlatelolco, Bangkok , Semipalatinsk or an equivalent international nuclear non-proliferation agreement, and full compliance with the obligations of such agreement(s); and
  • Support of international efforts towards nonproliferation of weapons of mass destruction and of their delivery vehicles.

The 2001 Aspen Plenary formally adopted the Procedure for NSG membership after an Implementation Working Group (IMP) set up by the 2000 Paris Plenary presented a draft paper on how a restructured NSG might operate. The Aspen Plenary also defined what it meant by adherence thus:

“To be eligible to become a new NSG Participating Government, a government must have adhered to the Guidelines for the Export of Nuclear Material, Equipment and Technology, and the Guidelines for Transfers of Nuclear Related Dual-Use Equipment, Materials, Software and Related Technology. Such adherence is accomplished by sending an official communication to the Director-General of the IAEA stating that the government will act in accordance with the Guidelines. This communication is to be intended for publication in the INFCIRC series.”

Click Here to Read Full Article

Click Here to Join Online Coaching for IAS (Pre.) Exam

<< Go Back To Magazine Articles Main Page