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Statement by Ambassador Wu Ken, Head of the Chinese Delegation, at the Eighty-Ninth Session of the Executive Council of the OPCW

Mme. Chair,


Please allow me, on behalf of the Chinese delegation, to welcome you back to the Chair of the Executive Council (Council) at this session.  The Chinese delegation will fully cooperate with you, and with other delegations, in a joint effort to help this session successfully complete all its proceedings.  


The Chinese delegation wishes to thank the Director-General for his comprehensive work report.  Since this is the first time that His Excellency Fernando Arias attends an EC session as the Director-General, the Chinese delegation would like to welcome him, and hopes that under his leadership, the Technical Secretariat will make further achievements in its work.


The Chinese delegation wishes also to thank the Vice-Chairpersons for their respective reports.  This delegation associates itself with the statement made by the Permanent Representative of Venezuela, Ambassador Haifa Aissami Madah, on behalf of the NAM CWC States Parties and China.  Now, I would like to take this opportunity to elaborate further China's positions and views regarding the following issues.


Under the current complex and unsteady international circumstances, this Organization is faced also with mounting opportunities as well as challenges.  It is in this situation that the Fourth Special Session of the Conference to Review the Operation of the Convention (the Fourth Review Conference) will soon be held.  It will therefore be of great significance.  All States Parties have the responsibility to engage actively in the preparation for the Fourth Review Conference, and in the session itself, so as to play their leading role and contribute to its success.  China believes that in order for the Fourth Review Conference to succeed, efforts should be made to achieve two balances.  Firstly, a balance should be ensured in addressing all the main articles of the Convention, especially those regarding the destruction of chemical weapons (CW), industry verification, assistance and protection against CWs and international cooperation.  Secondly, the concerns of all sides should be considered in a balanced way.  In the process, in-depth discussions and patient consultation should be conducted, in a bid to bring about consensus-based results from the Conference.


My delegation commends His Excellency Ambassador Puja of Indonesia, the Chairperson of the Working Group for the Preparation of the Fourth Review Conference for his work, and looks forward to working with all the other parties in forging fruitful results out of the Conference.


Mme. Chair,


China is of the view that the Fourth Review Conference should continue to attach importance to the role which the destruction of all the categories of CWs plays in the realization of the objects and purposes of the Convention.  China is compelled to point out that despite the constant progress made in the destruction of CW stockpiles, the process of the destruction of Chemical Weapons Abandoned by Japan on the Territory of China has been repeatedly delayed.  China finds this situation deeply worrying.  As long as the last piece of Japanese ACWs has not been destroyed, and the real threat posed by Japanese ACWs to the lives and properties of the people and the ecology and environment in China has not been eliminated, the goal of "a CW-free world" will never be attained.  China urges Japan to honour earnestly its obligation as an abandoning State Party by increasing its human, material and financial inputs so as to complete the destruction at an early date, as required by the Convention and within the timeframe adopted by the Council.  China will as always provide appropriate cooperation.  


China stresses that at the Fourth Review Conference, the issue of Japanese ACWs should be fully reviewed.  While the progress made concerning Japanese ACWs should be objectively evaluated, the fact that their destruction has lagged behind schedule should be truthfully reflected.  The Fourth Review Conference should also enhance the reviewing and monitoring functions of the Council, the Conference and the Review Conference as regards Japanese ACWs, and ensure resources inputs by this Organization in this connection.


Mme. Chair,


China has taken note of the progress report by the Director-General on the implementation of the decision on "Addressing the Threat Posed by the Use of Chemical Weapons" adopted at the Fourth Special Session of the Conference, and the request by the Secretariat for a budgetary addition for the implementation of the said decision.  Major disagreements still exist on the decision itself, as well as its implementation. China maintains that in implementing this decision, the Secretariat should carry out extensive and in-depth communications with the States Parties, listen to the views and proposals of various parties, and seek as much consensus as possible.  China also calls upon relevant parties to proceed from the approaches of having mutual respect and seeking a common ground while shelving differences, and involve themselves in the discussions concerned, so as to avoid further confrontation and politicization.


At present, all the parties are in the process of having consultations on the OPCW's annual programme and budget of 2019.  China believes that while trying to put the size of the overall budget under control and optimize budget distributions, the potentials of the existing fund and staff of the OPCW should be tapped as much as practicable, and that financial burdens for States Parties should not be unduly increased.


Mme. Chair,


It is China's consistent position that disputes should be resolved through consultation and dialogue.  This is a principle which has turned particularly important for the present.  China calls on all sides to cherish and preserve this Organization's tradition of forging consensus, so as to create a fine atmosphere for the successful convocation of the Fourth Review Conference.  


Thank you, Mme. Chair.

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