U.S. and China Strengthen Partnership to Prevent Illicit WMD-Related Trade

Press Release
Sep 11, 2009

SHANGHAI, CHINA – The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) and China's General Administration of Customs (GAC), in cooperation with the China Arms Control and Disarmament Association (CACDA) and the University of Georgia Center for International Trade and Security, today announced the successful conclusion of a workshop on Weapons of Mass Destruction Commodity Identification Training (WMD-CIT) in Shanghai, China. The workshop, attended by Chinese customs managers and other front-line officers, focused on effective means and ways to recognize and inspect WMD-related goods. The workshop was followed by discussions for a Chinese-based curriculum at the Shanghai Customs College.

"In his Prague speech and elsewhere, President Obama has outlined an unprecedented nuclear security agenda that seeks to secure vulnerable nuclear materials worldwide and to reduce the threat of nuclear terrorism," said NNSA Administrator Thomas D'Agostino. "This partnership will improve regional information sharing and efforts to detect illicit materials – two critical elements in combating illicit transfers of WMD-related commodities."

The WMD-CIT curriculum is developed and delivered by NNSA's International Nonproliferation Export Control Program (INECP), which has helped more than 60 countries strengthen implementation of WMD-related export controls. CIT training emphasizes and enhances Customs officials' recognition of unique markers and "red-flags" for illicit WMD-related items, such as appearance, weight and typical packaging. INECP works with the Department of State's Export Control and Border Security Program (EXBS) and has trained more than 12,000 customs and export control officials worldwide since 9/11.

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Established by Congress in 2000, NNSA is a semi-autonomous agency within the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for enhancing national security through the military application of nuclear science in the nation's national security enterprise. NNSA maintains and enhances the safety, security, reliability, and performance of the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile without nuclear testing; reduces the global danger from weapons of mass destruction; provides the U.S. Navy with safe and effective nuclear propulsion; and responds to nuclear and radiological emergencies in the U.S. and abroad. Visit http://www.nnsa.energy.gov/ for more information.

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