February 24, 2022
For three days, from February 15 to 17, 2022, the Asian Export Control Seminar was held online by the Center for Information on Security Trade Control (CISTEC) as an organizer, jointly with the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) as co-organizers. The seminar was the 28th seminar since its inauguration, bringing together approximately 400 participants from 31 countries and regions, international organizations, and other organizations.
1. Background to and overview of the seminar
The Asia Export Control Seminar, an annual event, has been held since 1993, held for the benefit of persons in charge of export control in Asian countries and regions. From the standpoint of preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and preventing the destabilizing accumulation of conventional weapons, Japan considers it important to enhance systems toward non-proliferation of such weapons across Asian countries and regions, which have recently begun to play a leading role in a core part of global supply chains. The seminar aims to foster common recognition of the situation toward establishment and enhancement of export control systems in Asian countries and regions, and to this end, it has been providing participants with opportunities to actively exchange views on international security export control efforts, the current situations of efforts by member countries, new challenges surrounding export control and other issues.
The event was canceled in 2021 due to COVID-19, but this year, it was held online. The 28th seminar focused on the growing diversity and sophistication of procurement activities that are used to access sensitive technologies applicable to developing and manufacturing WMDs or conventional weapons in Asian countries and regions. Against this backdrop, participants aimed to improve the establishment and strengthen the implementation of systems throughout Asia in line with international standards such as the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540 and those of the multilateral export control regimes. Participants also shared the current situations of activities by international organizations and efforts and best practices related to export control being tackled by member countries and regions.
2. Outline of the seminar
The seminar brought together about 400 people from 31 countries and regions, including those in Asia, the United States, and European countries, and from international organizations and other organizations.
(2) Main content of the seminar
Mr. Ishii Masahiro, State Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, delivered the opening remarks. He mentioned that it is becoming increasingly important for the security of Asia and the world to introduce and strengthen the implementation of systems for export control in all countries and regions in Asia, which is a base for the production and distribution of goods and technologies that are important for security and a major constituent of the global supply chain. At the same time, he stressed that the introduction of appropriate export control systems would not necessarily impede economic development, as it would lead to enhancing relationships of trust with trading partners in the international community. Lastly, he expressed his hopes that the Asian Export Control Seminar would be a place to exchange views on common issues regarding the effective implementation of export control, and contribute to strengthening the export control systems of the participating countries and regions.
[Panel discussion: Ensuring the effectiveness of export control systems]
For this seminar, the panel discussion was divided into two parts, taking into account the online format and time differences between the participants.
The first part addressed the strengthening of intangible technology transfer (ITT) controls, which has been widely discussed in recent years. Panelists from Japan, the United States, and Malaysia explained their outreach activities and efforts to make guidelines related to ITT, and discussed measures such as export control capacity building for parties involved in export control, and measures that were part of their efforts to address ITT control issues.
The second part addressed the government's efforts to strengthen cooperation with industry, which plays a key role in strengthening export control implementation. Panelists from Japan, Germany, the United Kingdom, India, and the Philippines explained and discussed the latest concrete measures that were implemented by participating countries and issues they faced, including promoting the introduction of internal export control regulations for exporters, granting of incentives to exporters actively engaged in export control, and outreach activities in each industry.
[International efforts toward ensuring security]
Concerning efforts for preventing the proliferation of WMDs, representatives of the UN Security Council 1540 Committee, the UN Security Council Sanctions Committee on North Korea,the UN Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (joint presentation with the European External Action Service), the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), and the Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation (HCOC) explained the latest efforts being tackled by the respective organizations.
Representatives of the multilateral export control regimes (Australia Group [AG], Missile Technology Control Regime [MTCR], Nuclear Suppliers Group [NSG], and the Wassenaar Arrangement [WA]) also explained their latest efforts concerning technological developments.
[Efforts to control exports in countries and regions]
Representatives of India, Cambodia, China, Canada, the United States, Malaysia, South Korea, Laos, the EU, France, Switzerland, Mongolia, Pakistan, the Philippines, Singapore, Hong Kong, Russia and the United Arab Emirates explained their latest efforts to strengthen export control.
(3) Results of the seminarThe seminar brought together approximately 400 participants related to export control from 31 countries and regions, including those in Asia, the United States, and European countries, international organizations, and other organizations. The participants discussed important issues in establishing and strengthening the implementation of legal systems, and shared information on their latest efforts.
The seminar also helped strengthen the network of Asian countries and regions and other participants. METI will continue to make efforts to encourage Asian countries and regions to establish export control systems and enhance the effectiveness of existing systems through its outreach activities, including this seminar.
3. Participating countries, regions, organizations, etc.
(1) Asia (18 countries and regions)India, Indonesia, South Korea, Cambodia, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand, China, Pakistan, Bangladesh, the Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Myanmar, Mongolia, Laos, Taiwan, and Hong Kong
(2) Outside of Asia (13 countries and regions)United Arab Emirates, Italy, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Canada, Australia, Switzerland, Germany, France, the United States, Russia, and the European Union
(3) International organizations, etc.
The UN Security Council 1540 Committee, the UN Security Council Sanctions Committee on North Korea, the UN Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs (joint presentation with the European External Action Service), the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), the Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation (HCOC), the multilateral export control regimes (Australia Group AG], Missile Technology Control Regime [MTCR], Nuclear Suppliers Group [NSG], and the Wassenaar Arrangement [WA])
Division in Charge
Office of International Affairs for Security Export Control, Trade Control Department, Trade and Economic Cooperation Bureau