Statement by the Japanese Delegation at the 48th Session of Working Group B of the Preparatory Commission for the CTBTO

Thank you, Mr. Chairman,
At the outset, our delegation would like to thank Executive Secretary Dr. Lassina Zerbo for his statement. Let me also thank you, Mr. Chairman, for your efforts to lead and coordinate this Working Group B (WGB) meeting, and all the Task Leaders for their on-going dedicated work.
[Nuclear Test by North Korea]

Mr. Chairman,
We commend the Provisional Technical Secretariat (PTS) for their efforts in successfully detecting the fifth nuclear test by North Korea in September 2016 and ensuing prompt technical briefings. In this instance, the critical importance of the verification regime under the CTBT was proved once again.

In this context, it is essential for the Preparatory Commission for the CTBTO to keep readiness of its verification regime for any future potential nuclear testing. Japan stands ready to continue its support for the enhancement of the capabilities of the verification regime.
[Recent Developments in the IMS and IDC related Issues]

Mr. Chairman,
We welcome the successful completion of the reestablishment of hydroacoustic station HA04 in the Crozet Islands (France) in December 2016, with which the hydroacoustic portion of the global network is completed.
Japan welcomes all the impressive achievements of installation and certification around the globe. In particular, Japan welcomes the first certification of the IMS station in China in December 2016 and hopes for a continued progress towards further certification of the remaining stations in China.
[IDC Progressive Commissioning Plan]

Mr. Chairman,
Japan welcomes the continued efforts of the PTS on ongoing performance monitoring and testing of phase 5b of the IDC Progressive Commissioning Plan, including the full scale experiment conducted in last September.

We thank the PTS for its update to the road map of Phase 5b of the IDC Progressive Commissioning Plan (CTBT/PTS/INF.1384) and look forward to the discussion at the current WGB session, taking into account the relevant recommendation of the 47th session of the WGB. We welcome the PTS’ intention to continue briefings to the State Signatories on further developments.  
[Capacity Building]

Mr. Chairman,
Japan appreciates the continued efforts of the PTS regarding capacity building. We have supported these efforts by convening the JICA Global Seismological Observation Training Course since 1995. For this year, Japan is currently conducting the Course for 18 trainees mainly from non-signatory and non-ratifying States across the globe in order to train future NDC personnel in those countries. Japan appreciates the PTS for sending a lecturer to the course again this year.
[2018-2019 Programme and Budget]

Mr. Chairman,
With regard to the 2018-2019 Programme and Budget, Japan thanks the PTS for issuing its initial draft. We believe that it is essential for the WGB to provide technical guidance to the Preparatory Commission with priorities placed on early completion and sustainment of the verification regime, as well as fulfilling the capacity building needs.

Our delegation attaches particular importance to achieving the completion of the IMS build-up, continuing the important work on data transmission and the certification process, as well as to continuously strengthening OSI capabilities.
In closing, I would like to assure you, Mr. Chairman, and the Task Leaders, of Japan’s continuous support and engagement in all sessions of the WGB.
I thank you, Mr. Chairman.