Japan's Approaches to Non-Proliferation

September 2002

1. Overview

Japan attaches great importance to non-proliferation efforts in order to contribute to the enhancement of global and regional peace and stability as part of its security policies. After the 9.11 events, the prevention of CBRN terrorism is gaining increasingly greater importance. In Northeast Asia, in particular, proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missiles has continued throughout the 90's.

North Korea's WMD and missile activities related are destabilizing factors for Japan's own security as well as that of the region. Accordingly, North Korea's WMD and missile related activities are of primary concern for Japan's non-proliferation policy. At the same time, the proliferation of WMD and missile related technologies from North Korea would also affect global peace and security. Japan's non-proliferation efforts thus reflect its interest and responsibility in contributing to global peace and stability.

Based on the policy guideline described above, Japan's non-proliferation efforts consist of the following four pillars: dealing with North Korea's WMD and missile related activities, containing proliferation risks in the regions, upgrading regional non-proliferation endeavors and strengthening multilateral non-proliferation mechanisms.

2. Dealing with North Korea's WMD and Missiles related activities

Concerning North Korea's WMD and missile related activities, Japan has made the following efforts described below to tackle this issue. In order to cope with this issue, policy coordination among countries concerned is important. From this point of view, Japan attaches great importance to the Trilateral Coordination and Oversight Group (TCOG) process among Japan, the U.S. and South Korea to coordinate policies towards North Korea, including security issues such as ballistic missile issues.

1) Japan regards KEDO (Korean Peninsular Energy Development Organization) as an effective and realistic framework to solve the issue of nuclear weapons development in North Korea. Japan has made significant contributions to KEDO from its earliest stage and has been actively supporting the implementation of the Agreed Framework reached between the U.S. and North Korea. As one of the original Executive Board Members of KEDO, Japan has committed 116.5 billion Yen in loans to KEDO and has already disbursed 311 million U.S. dollars through the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC), and 9.38 million dollars for KEDO's payment of interest to JBIC. In addition, Japan has contributed 29 million U.S. dollars to help cover administrative expenses of the KEDO office.

2) Japan's goal is to remove ballistic missiles that have been already deployed in the Korean Peninsula, as well as to ensure the implementation of effective verification measures established as a result of U.S.-North Korean consultations. Meanwhile, in various bilateral consultations and multilateral forums such as MTCR, Japan endeavors to ensure that North Korea's missile program is not supported or assisted by other countries.

3) In the bilateral dialogue between Japan and North Korea, the WMD and missile development by North Korea is one of the most important issues on the agenda. Japan seeks to persuade North Korea to ultimately abandon its WMD option.

3. Containing Proliferation Risks in the Regions

Through its direct contacts with countries developing WMD and ballistic missiles, Japan is seeking to discourage these countries from pursuing the WMD option and to contain the proliferation of WMD and their delivery means in those regions with high proliferation risks.

1) Regarding the development of nuclear capabilities and ballistic missiles by India and Pakistan, Japan has been urging both countries to make further efforts in disarmament and non-proliferation of WMD and their means of delivery, including signing of the CTBT. In response to the ballistic missile tests conducted by India in January and by Pakistan in May, Japan expressed its serious concern over those tests and urged both countries to exercise maximum restraints.

2) Iran's ballistic missiles and suspected WMD development is also a major concern for Japan. Japan has been raising this issue with Iran during high-level visits, including the visit by Iranian President Khatami to Japan in October 2000. Japan has continued to express its concern and call for concrete action by Iran to eliminate international concern over Iran's suspected development of WMDs in the interest of global and regional security.

4. Upgrading Regional Non-proliferation Endeavors

As regional non-proliferation efforts are indispensable for truly strengthening global non-proliferation, Japan puts much emphasis on non-proliferation in East / South East Asia and Central Asia.

1) Japan has invited East Asian countries to a number of seminars and workshops on various issues of non-proliferation. Some of these countries are thought to be acquiring capabilities for producing dual-use goods and technologies convertible to WMDs due to their rapid economic development and some countries are also important as transshipment points, while their non-proliferation policies are not necessarily adequate enough. Japan, therefore, has been hosting a number of seminars and workshops on an annual or ad-hoc basis to raise those countries' awareness of the importance of non-proliferation. Those seminars include those on the universalization and strengthening of CWC (March 2002), universalization of the Additional Protocol of IAEA Safeguards Agreements (June 2001), strengthening of export control systems (1993-2001) and raising awareness on missile proliferation (March 2001 and March 2002). Japan received a South Korean task force team of export control officers in September 2002 to assist the introduction of catch-all controls in ROK.

2) Since Central Asian countries have yet to implement their system for non-proliferation, Japan has been receiving export control experts every year to help establish effective national export control systems in those countries for the past nine years.

5. Strengthening Multilateral Non-proliferation Mechanisms

1) Strengthening Multilateral Frameworks

Japan believes that efforts for non-proliferation should be undertaken by all members of the international community. From this viewpoint, Japan considers that multilateral frameworks to deal with this issue should be strengthened.

i) First, Japan firmly supports the process of strengthening the NPT, BWC and CWC. The universalization of the Additional Protocol of IAEA Safeguards Agreements, strengthening of the effective functioning of the CWC mechanism, including the administration and financing of OPCW, and enhancement of the effectiveness of BWC are of particular importance.

ii) Japan believes that the CTBT plays a central role in sustaining the international nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation regime founded on the NPT, and is a practical and concrete measure for realizing a peaceful and safe world free from nuclear weapons. In this spirit Japan is pursuing the early entry into force of the CTBT and the establishment of the verification mechanism.

iii) Japan also puts priority on strengthening the export control regimes and gaining broader support for its objectives by countries outside the regimes. Outreach activities targeting East Asian and Central Asian countries (see 4. above) serve this purpose. Japan supports the universalization process of ICOC since it sees in the Code an attempt to introduce to the international community certain new norms in the field of ballistic missile non-proliferation. In this context, it is of utmost importance to establish norms that truly contribute to non-proliferation objectives.

2) G8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction

Countries that have produced weapons of mass destruction should be held responsible for their elimination. However, if the proliferation risks of dangerous substances pose a serious security challenge to the international community, they should be controlled by joint international endeavors.

i) Japan actively participated in the discussion at the G8 Kananaskis Summit on the "G8 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction", particularly in the formulation of "Guidelines for New or Expanded Cooperation Projects". Japan strongly hopes that the Partnership and its Guidelines will facilitate smooth implementation of cooperation projects.

ii) At the G8 Kananaskis Summit, Japan committed financial contributions amounting up to a little more than 200 million U.S. dollars to the G8 Global Partnership. Out of this, 100 million U.S. dollars will be contributed to the international organization that the G8 will newly establish to address the issue of the disposal of surplus weapons-grade plutonium.

iii) Japan has firmly supported the IAEA's efforts in these states to address possible threat of nuclear terrorism. After the IAEA announced its "Action Plan for Protection against Nuclear Terrorism" last March, Japan immediately contributed half a million U.S. dollars to the special fund. To respond effectively to the threat of nuclear terrorism, Japan believes that a strict control of nuclear and other radioactive sources is crucial as well as strengthened safeguards regimes.

iv) Japan has also made a significant contribution of 53 million U.S. dollars to the ISTC to support efforts to prevent the brain drain of former Soviet scientists to countries of concern.

6. Conclusion

Today, efforts to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their delivery means have become increasingly important for the maintenance of international and regional peace and security. Japan is determined to play an active role in this regard.


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