Key Information:Date of join: January 19, 2018
Members of Australia Group: 43 (India is 43rd member of Australia Group)
Established year of Australia Group: 1985
Aim of Australia Group: Control over export and use of chemical and biological weapons
About Australia group
- Australia group is an informal group of 43 countries whose primary aim is to minimize the risk of chemical and biological weapons proliferation. This group is known as ‘Australia Group’ as Australia was the first country who took initiative to control the spread of chemical and biological weapons.
- Now, the Australia group’s members regulate the export of 54 compounds under the control list (this list made by Australia group). These chemical compounds are very harmful and can be used to make dangerous biological weapons.
The 43 members of Australia group are as follow:
|1) Australia||16) Spain||32) Republic of Cyprus|
|2) Belgium||17) United Kingdom||33) Turkey|
|3) Canada||18) United States||34) Bulgaria|
|4) Denmark||19) Norway||35) Estonia|
|5) EU(European Union)||20) Switzerland||36) Latvia|
|6) France||21) Austria||37) Lithuania|
|7) Germany||22) Finland||38) Malta|
|8) Greece||23) Sweden||39) Slovenia|
|9) Ireland||25) Hungary||40) Ukraine|
|10) Italy||26) Iceland||41) Croatia|
|11) Japan||27) Czech Republic||42) Mexico|
|12) Luxembourg||28) Poland||43) India|
|13) Netherlands||29) Slovak Republic|
|14) New Zealand||30) Romania|
|15) Portugal||31) Republic of Korea (South Korea)|
Criteria to become member of Australia Group
- First, to prevent the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons.
- Secondly, the country, who wants to become a member of Australia group, should be a manufacturer of that chemical compound which is listed in control list of Australia group.
- Accept all the guidelines for chemical and biological weapons and implement them.
- If member countries do not follow guidelines of Australia group then legal penalties will be enforced on them.
- Strengthen the Australia group in preventing chemical and biological weapons.
What are a Chemical weapon and Biological weapon?
- Chemical weapons: Chemical weapons are considered as a weapon of gases. These weapons suffocate victims and can cause massive burning.
- Biological weapons: Biological weapons are slow acting weapons. These types of weapon can cause diseases like anthrax, smallpox.
Why Australia Group formed?
- During the Iran-Iraq war (1984), Iraq had used chemical weapons on Irani civilians, which is a violation of the 1925 Geneva protocol. According to Geneva protocol, no county can directly attack civilians.
- In 1985, Australia initiated a meeting of countries with an aim of control the export of harmful chemicals and coordinating their national licensing measure and enhancing cooperation.
- The first meeting of Australia group was joined by 15 countries including European Union in Brussels.
How the membership of Australia group is beneficial for India?Now India becomes a member of Australia group. Benefits of membership of Australia group are as follow:
- Now India can boost the relationship with Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) members, as many of members of NSG are also a member of Australia group and the good news is that China is not a part of this group. As we know, China is holding up India’s membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).
- Now, India can also participate in farming rules to prevent the spread chemical and biological weapons.
India’s ProgressIndia is a member of Australia group, MTCR and Wassenaar group.
|Australia Group||1985||43rd member|
|Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR)||1987||35th member|
|Wassenaar Agreement||1996||42nd member|
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