Mexico has contributed â¬ 5,000 to an Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) trust fund to support the construction of a new facility, the OPCW’s Center for Chemistry and Technology ( âChemTech Centerâ).
The contribution was formalized by an exchange of letters.
The Permanent Representative of Mexico to the OPCW, HE Ambassador JosÃ© Antonio Zabalgoitia Trejo, said: âMexico supports the strengthening of the role of the OPCW as promoter of the peaceful uses of chemistry. The ChemTech Center is the cornerstone of this role and will be increasingly relevant as we achieve the goal of the Chemical Weapons Convention of ridding the world of chemical weapons.
The Director General expressed his gratitude to Mexico and noted: âI am very pleased that Mexico has supported the establishment and operation of the ChemTech Center. The Center is expected to be completed by the end of next year. This will be an important step forward in the way the OPCW uses science, technology and capacity building to fulfill its mandate. It will also be an essential tool to help the 193 Member States meet their obligations under the Convention, keep pace with current threats and prepare for future challenges.
Director General Arias expressed his gratitude to the States Parties to the OPCW and other donors who have supported the project.
To date, 49 countries, the European Union and four other donors have contributed or have pledged to contribute financially to the ChemTech Center project, and 33.65 million euros have been raised to date.
States Parties are encouraged to continue participating in this important project. Other voluntary contributions will be used to finance equipment and activities related to international cooperation and assistance involving the ChemTech Center.
The ChemTech Center construction project aims to build the capacity of the OPCW to fully address new and emerging threats from chemical weapons, as well as to support capacity building in OPCW Member States. The current OPCW laboratory and equipment store are essential to the effectiveness and integrity of the Chemical Weapons Convention verification regime, and they also contribute to capacity building and international cooperation activities. of the OPCW. However, the current facility will soon no longer be suitable for its needs due to its aging infrastructure, space constraints, increased workloads and new assignments with new areas of work.
A new facility is needed to meet the demands of OPCW Member States for improved verification tools, improved detection capabilities and response measures, as well as increased capacity building activities. The ChemTech Center will also help the OPCW keep pace with scientific and technological developments and new threats from chemical weapons. Construction of the ChemTech Center began in 2021 and is expected to be completed by the end of 2022.
To date, the following Member States have contributed or have committed to contribute to the project: Algeria, Andorra, Angola, Australia, Bangladesh, Belgium, Canada, Chile, China, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and United States of America. The European Union, Israel (a signatory state) and other donors also contributed.
As the implementing body of the Chemical Weapons Convention, the OPCW, with its 193 member states, oversees the global effort to eliminate chemical weapons permanently. Since the entry into force of the Convention in 1997, it has been the most effective disarmament treaty eliminating a whole category of weapons of mass destruction.
Over 98% of all declared chemical weapons stockpiles have been destroyed under OPCW verification. For its considerable efforts in eliminating chemical weapons, the OPCW received the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.