Not getting demoralized with the shunning of the dream of getting into elite NSG group, India is now set to become a member of Missile Technology Control Regime(MTCR), one of the four main export control regimes.
It has been confirmed through Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar who will be signing the agreement for entering MTCR in a ceremony attended by envoys from France, Netherlands and Luxembourg.
One official has claimed that India’s entry into MTCR can be reinforcing on others since India’s credentials are vetted in one and the remaining three( NSG, Australia Group, and Wassenaar Arrangement) can follow the example.
Our efforts to become a member began after the signing of Indo-US nuclear deal in 2008. But the same deal was stuck till 2015 over liability issues and as these were lifted, India’s bid gained momentum. Its procedure is same line NSGs through consensus. Their method is termed as ‘silent procedure’ which cites that if all the other members don’t raise any objections within a trial period of 10 days, the new member can be admitted. Initially, objections were raised by Italy due to Italian marines issue. As India allowed them to return to their native nation, the objections were subsequently dropped and India thus became a member.
Admission to MTCR will open the way for India to buy high-end missile technology which will fulfill its aspiration to buy surveillance drones such as the Predator, made by General Atomics. Membership of the MTCR would require India to comply with rules, such as a maximum missile range of 300 km. MTCR was setup with the aim to prevent the proliferation of missiles and unmanned aerial vehicle technology capable of carrying a 500-kg payload over 300 km or more.
The news of India becoming a member is more rejuvenating especially after losing NSG bid. It has been claimed that China blocked India’s entry as it doesn’t want any South Asian power growing at a faster pace. Interestingly China isn’t a member of MTCR because of the allegations of it being a supplier of missile technology to North Korea.
India can certainly be benefitted from this. Moreover, India can also pressurize China now to accept its NSG bid in exchange of giving it a green signal in MTCR.
India needs to adopt a more self-centered approach now and move past the Hindi Chini bhai bhai gimmick. Let it rest in peace with the bureaucrats who were responsible for giving such high posts as charity because of which we are still suffering. China needs to learn its lessons for restraining our growth and supporting Pakistan. We have a great opportunity for economic boom due to exports. Let’s hope we take the best out of it.