26 March marks the 45th anniversary of the entry into force of the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention.
The Convention is the cornerstone of the international efforts to prevent biological agents or toxins from being developed, produced or otherwise acquired and ultimately used as weapons. As such, it is a crucial element of our collective security and one of the key instruments of multilateral disarmament and non-proliferation.
Since 1975, 183 States have become parties to the Convention. Universality is of crucial importance to effectively address global threats: all States that are not yet party to the Convention should join without delay.
The European Union and its Member States are strongly engaged in international efforts to improve bio-safety and bio-security around the globe. The European Union has provided close to €15 million since 2006 in support of the Convention directly, as well as to projects strengthening bio-safety and bio-security, such as in Ukraine and in a number of countries in Latin America.
As we move towards the 9th Review Conference of the Convention in 2021, the European Union will work towards concrete measures to enhance and further develop the Convention.