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India committed to working with international community: Mathai

New Delhi, Wed, 18 Apr 2012 ANI

New Delhi, Apr 18 (ANI): Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai on Wednesday said India is committed to working with the international community in advancing the common objectives of global non-proliferation and international security.

"We have for long recognized the challenge proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and their means of delivery poses for our national security and world order. The danger of terrorists gaining access to WMDs (weapons of mass destruction) has added another facet to this grave threat," said Mathai, while speaking at the National Export Control Seminar today, which is being organized jointly by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) and the Institute for Defence Studies and Analysis.

"Flowing from these considerations of national and international security and as a state possessing advanced and sensitive materials and technology, we are conscious of the need for responsible handling of these sensitive items from the point of production or manufacture, to their use internally or export abroad and eventual safe and secure disposition," he added.

Mathai said India has no interest whatsoever in aiding or abetting proliferation of WMDs, the misuse of dual use items or in non-state actors or terrorists gaining access to sensitive items.

"On the contrary, we view a strong and effective national export control system as an essential link between our broader national security goals and our wider foreign policy objectives," he added.

Stating that just as export controls are vital for national security and global non-proliferation objectives, Mathai said they are also essential for the pursuit of growth and national development by harnessing the benefits of globalization.

"Export control standards are increasingly the norm for global trade in sensitive material, equipment and technology and thus necessary if we are to increase the quantum of high technology items in our external trade and commercial exchanges. As India's integration with global trade patterns and supply chains deepens, it would increasingly become an important hub of manufacturing and export of high technology items. Foreign investment including through offsets for governmental procurement will strengthen our global links," said Mathai.

"Our export control system would add to the reliability and credibility of Indian companies in the global market and thus increase their competitive edge. High technology companies would invest in India confident that apart from favorable commercial returns, access to a huge market and skilled workforce and protection of IPR, there would be no risk of unauthorized diversion or re-exports. That export controls are an added burden on industry is a mistaken and shortsighted notion,e added.

The Foreign Secretary said the government is conscious that there be no unreasonable restrictions on legitimate trade and commercial activities and export control procedures are clear and implementable without undue delays.

Mathai further said India's impeccable non-proliferation record has been widely recognized and was reflected in the milestone NSG decision of September 2008 on Civil Nuclear Cooperation with India. (ANI)

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