First of all, let me echo colleagues in expressing my appreciation for and thanks to Mexico as chair of the 1540 committee for convening these open consultations.
The risk that non-state actors, particularly terrorists, may gain access to weapons of mass destruction continues to be a major threat for global security. Resolution 1540 (2004) therefore remains an important tool to prevent and counter this threat and as such constitutes an essential pillar of the non-proliferation architecture.
We welcome the progress made since 2004, which has greatly improved counter-proliferation standards worldwide. We also commend the intensified cooperation of the committee and the Group of Experts with UNODA´s regional centers as well as International Organizations such as the OPCW, UNODC, or IAEA. This is of particular importance also against the background of the ongoing Russian war of aggression against Ukraine.
It is my hope that the Comprehensive Review will help to build even stronger partnerships and to seek synergies with other actors working towards the same cause. The 1540 Group of Experts – to which I would like to offer my sincere thanks for their advice as well as their awareness-raising work – is essential in this regard.
Please allow me to make a few recommendations:
Novel threats, stemming from emerging technologies make it necessary to reflect on the scope of the resolution and may require extending the work of the Committee to new threats.
In order to guarantee the full and effective implementation of resolution 1540 and subsequent resolutions, it is of outmost importance to assist States requiring support. This assistance should be tailor-made to the specific needs of the State in question. The process of matching requests for assistance with offers from States or international, regional or sub-regional organizations is therefore vital and needs constant updating and refining.
Germany also feels that the 1540 Committee should make greater use of the many skills of the Group of Experts in all areas of its work – and the best way to do this would be to give them more independence, especially in their outreach and advocacy tasks.
As enshrined in Resolution 2325, dialogue with and outreach to industry and academia is key for the successful implementation at the national and international level: Since 2012, Germany has been actively involved in promoting an intensified cooperation between states and industries through the global Wiesbaden Conferences.
This process raises awareness, furthers the exchange of information and effective practices, and promotes private sector engagement as a “first line of defense”, which is vital for successful non-proliferation in a globalized world.
Last but not least, I would like to mention that Germany has submitted a working paper which draws on our experience with private sector engagement in strategic trade control.
Let me close by expressing my support to all, in particular to Mexico and Norway, who have requested that consideration should be given to linkages between UNSCR 1540 and the Women Peace and Security Agenda in the new mandate. Like in all other areas, Germany fully supports all efforts to ensure the full, equal, and meaningful participation of women at all levels of decision-making and implementation. And I look forward to seeing a strengthened mandate after the upcoming renewal.