Australian Embassy and Permanent Mission to the United Nations
Bosnia and Herzegovina, Hungary, Slovakia and Slovenia

Australian National Statement - 58th Preparatory Commission Meeting


Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization

58th Preparatory Commission Meeting

Australian National Statement

Delivered by Mr Emil Stojanovski, Deputy Permanent Representative of Australia to the CTBTO

27 June 2022


Thank you Chair.


Let me begin by assuring you of Australia’s full support and cooperation during your tenure, including at this 58th Session of the Preparatory Commission.


I wish to thank Working Group A, Working Group B, and all members of the Advisory Group for their hard work and for the respective reports they have produced.


I also wish to thank the Provisional Technical Secretariat for their ongoing and crucial support for the work of the policy-making organs.




Australia welcomes the continued strong leadership of the Executive Secretary and his efforts to promote the effective functioning of the PTS.


We commend the momentous work undertaken by Dr Floyd to pursue the shared goals of all States Signatories, including to obtain further ratifications of the CTBT.


In that context, we congratulate The Gambia and Tuvalu on their recent ratifications of the Treaty, and welcome Dominica’s signature of the Treaty just last month.


Our agenda will advance the important work in strengthening the global verification regime and promoting the Treaty’s universality.  All of which works toward a safer world free of nuclear tests. 


With full respect for—and because of—the importance this goal, Australia reiterates that this meeting is not taking place under normal circumstances.


Russia has continued its gross violation of international law, including breaching the most fundamental tenet of the UN Charter, through its illegal, unjustified and unprovoked aggression against the people of Ukraine.


Australia condemns, in the strongest possible terms, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and calls on Russia to immediately withdraw its forces from Ukrainian territory, consistent with the legally binding decision of the International Court of Justice.   Our support for Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity is unwavering.


We urge Russia to refrain from any actions that could jeopardise the integrity of the International Monitoring System, or that could impact the verification regime.  


Unsettling developments on the Korean Peninsula also compel us to express our deep concern at evidence indicating the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea could be ready to conduct additional nuclear testing.


We would go further than the Executive Sectary in calling on the DPRK not to resume nuclear testing, which would be a significant setback for regional stability and security.   


Australia calls on the DPRK to abandon its reckless pursuit of weapons of mass destruction and take concrete steps towards complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearisation.  Signing and ratifying the CTBT without delay would be a good start.




Turning to today’s agenda, Australia fully supports the budget proposals and recommendations from the Advisory and Working Groups that have been put forward for the Commission’s consideration.


We are fully cognisant of the highly volatile macroeconomic environment that the Executive Secretary spoke of in his opening remarks, and the risks to program budgets. 


It is pleasing that the organisation’s collection rate increased to 93 per cent in 2021.  But we’d like to see it at 100 per cent.  We therefore call on all States Signatories to ensure they pay their assessed contributions in full, on time and without condition.


There is also a critical need for a substantive Chair to be appointed to the Advisory Group to ensure its ongoing effectiveness.  To this end, we reiterate our support for Ms Rashmi Rajyaguru, the sole nominee to this position.


We welcome ongoing discussions on developing guidelines for holding non-scheduled sessions of the Commission, which should allow States Signatory to convene and respond to issues whenever necessary.


And we thank the Executive Secretary for his swift decision in appointing a new Director of Administration.  His appointment of this important role is warmly welcomed.


Finally Chair,


The forthcoming NPT Review Conference is a valuable opportunity to take stock of the crucial role the CTBT plays, even prior to its entry into force, in making the world safer and more secure.


We are also looking forward to the Executive Secretary’s address to the NPT Review Conference on its first day, which will further cement the CTBT as a key pillar of the international non-proliferation and disarmament regime.


We call on all states yet to do so – particularly Annex 2 states – to ratify the Treaty without delay.


It is important that the CTBTO’s verification capabilities continue to be developed and maintained, in accordance with treaty requirements, and to facilitate civil and scientific benefits.


And so it is our collective responsibility to ensure the IMS is both financially supported and technically maintained, to ensure it is fit for purpose when the Treaty finally entry into force.


Thank you.