On December 7, 2017, Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies admitted India as its 42nd member.
About Wassenaar Arrangement:
Wassenaar Arrangement is a multilateral export control regime (MECR) that promotes transparency and greater responsibility in transfers of conventional arms and dual-use goods and technologies in order to enhance regional and international security and stability.
- It was established in July 1996, in Wassenaar, the Netherlands and its Secretariat is located in Vienna, Austria.
- As per the terms of this arrangement, at the intervals of six months, member countries exchange information on deliveries of conventional arms to non-Wassenaar members.
- It is to be noted that Wassenaar Arrangement is not a treaty, and thus, is not legally binding upon member countries.
Significance of India’s entry into Wassenaar Arrangement (WA):
Admission in Wassenaar Arrangement will strengthen India’s non-proliferation credentials and will help to acquire critical technologies.
- To be admitted to WA, member countries must meet certain criteria, such as being signatories to global non-proliferation treaties, including the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
- India has been admitted to WA, despite of not being a signatory to NPT. However, in the beginning of 2017, India had updated its export control lists to align it with international standards.
- Besides, Russia played an important role in facilitating India’s entry in the WA.
- India was admitted to the Wassenaar Arrangement, at its 23rd annual plenary, which concluded in Vienna on December 7, 2017.
- India’s entry in WA, coming within a year and half of its admission into (Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), testifies its growing importance in international politics.
- This development may marginally tilt the consensus in India’s favour for entry into Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).