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The Evolution of EU and Chinese Amrs Export Controls

Time:2012-07-21 12:03Source:China Arms Control & Disarmame Author:军控协会 Click:
The Evolution of EU and Chinese Arms Export Controlsn Introduction The global trade of conventional arms has proliferated and increased in volume, and in recent years, arms have become more sophisticated. There are more countries today wit

 

 

The Evolution of EU and
Chinese Arms Export
Controlsn
 
Introduction
 
The global trade of conventional arms has proliferated and increased
in volume, and in recent years, arms have become more
sophisticated. There are more countries today with the capacity to
produce and export conventional arms and dual-use technologies in
mass quantities, thus fuelling a growing market and global demand.
All available evidence indicates that—while lagging far behind other
major arms producers such as the United States, Russia, France, UK
and Germany—China’s arms exports have increased. For example,
the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI)
estimates that while China was the tenth largest exporter in 2005, it
became the fourth largest in 2010.1 This trend is likely to continue for
the foreseeable future.
At the same time, the incentives and pressure to export arms and
dual-use technologies are being increasingly scrutinized, with an
emerging consensus and normative push—primarily through the UN
Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) initiative—to help ensure that conventional
arms are only transferred for appropriate use. The effective
enforcement and implementation of the impending ATT, however,
rests on strong political will and robust export control mechanisms
from each and every arms exporting country. To that end,
international co-operation on export control is an important supplyside
strategy to curb the flow of arms into regional trouble spots and
conflicts.
It is for precisely these reasons that the China Arms Control and
Disarmament Association (CACDA) and Saferworld have embarked
on this important project to deepen and expand EU-China dialogue
on international arms transfers. Over the last two years, the range of
activities, the levels of engagement, as well as the scope of the
substantive dialogue between European and Chinese counterparts on
both the official and non-governmental circles have seen measurable
progress and impact. In 2009 when the Saferworld-CACDA
partnership was first conceived, there was very limited substantive
knowledge among the Chinese policy community on conventional
arms control issues and processes. Since then, the project has
forged and sustained important channels of communication between
EU officials and experts with key Chinese government agencies,
defense industries, as well as the epistemic community in universities
and other research institutes. It has introduced unprecedented
opportunities in China and in Europe for debate on conventional arms
control, whereby a much more well-informed realm of decisionmakers,
policy elites and experts now have a stronger capacity to
engage in this field within China and abroad.
More specifically, this report is an important output of the
confidence-building dialogues on the regulation and nonproliferation
of the global arms trade. Many Chinese officials and policy elites are
not entirely familiar with European thinking on conventional arms
control, and Europeans may not fully appreciate the nuances and
difficulties in China’s position on the ATT and conventional arms
control. The report contains four main sections: an introduction, a
chapter each on China and the EU’s position on the regulation of the
international arms trade, and a conclusion with policy
recommendations.
The chapter on China’s position is drafted by Chinese specialists and
captures the oft-missing contextual analysis and insights into the
Chinese foreign policy ‘black box’ on conventional arms export
control issues. The chapter provides a wealth of information and
analysis, carefully tracking some of the most significant policy
developments behind the evolving Chinese position on conventional
arms export control while shedding light on some of the most
powerful and important actors in China’s intricate and somewhat adhoc
internal decision-making mechanisms on regulating conventional
arms transfers. The chapter also delves into some of China’s
concerns on the regulation of conventional arms, the primary of
which is a call for the major arms exporters to carefully balance
competing policy objectives—regulation on the one hand and
reducing unnecessary and excessively intrusive restraints on the
transfer of arms and dual-use technologies on the other hand. In (Editor:军控协会)
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