The annual conference of the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG) agreed in Gothenburg, Sweden on Friday to accept China as a member of the organization, a source with the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense said.
"China's accession to the NSG contributes tremendously to the international non-proliferation effort," said the commission's Vice Minister Zhang Huazhu in Beijing Friday.
Founded in 1975, the NSG is an unofficial organization of nuclear capable countries exercising control on nuclear exports. It was made up of 40 member states before China's accession, including the United States, Britain, France and Russia.
"China supports the NSG's positive role, objectives and principles in nuclear non-proliferation," said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Liu Jianchao Thursday at a press conference.
China applied to join the NSG on Jan. 26 this year. In 1984, China joined the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), and in 1992 China joined the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT).
China's NSG accession not only enhances the universality and effectiveness of the international nuclear non-proliferation mechanism, but is helpful for the construction of global non-proliferation systems, said Zhang.
As a nuclear power and IAEA member, China has consistently been supporting and taking an active part in international cooperation against nuclear proliferation, he said, noting that since 1984, China has joined several international treaties and organizations on non-proliferation of nuclear weapons and materials.
China in 1989 signed an international treaty on nuclear material protection, and in 1997, China enacted laws to regulate nuclear material export. China is now rectifying its domestic laws and regulations on nuclear exports so as to meet the international standards of the NSG, according to official sources.
China pursues a policy of not advocating, encouraging or engaging in the proliferation of nuclear weapons, nor helping other countries to develop nuclear weapons, Zhang said.
China's nuclear exports will strictly follow the principle of peaceful use and IAEA's supervision, he acknowledged, adding that the non-proliferation effort of nuclear weapons should not harm other countries, especially developing countries' right to use nuclear energy peacefully.
Under current circumstances, the non-proliferation of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction is conducive to the international and regional peace and security as well as the common interest of the international community, Zhang said.
(Xinhua News Agency May 28, 2004)