According to a list prepared by the US Bureau of Industry and Security, seven Pakistani companies for their alleged involvement in nuclear trade ostensibly pose a threat to the security and interests of the US. This means that they will face restrictions thus barring them from any kind of international trade. Moreover, the inclusion of seven Pakistani entities to the list published in the US Federal Register can be seen as applying more pressure on Pakistan to meet American demand of clamping down on terror suspects and outfits.
Can the inclusion of these companies weaken Pakistan’s bid for joining the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG), an export control regime that was founded in the mid-1970s, is an informal body composed of nuclear suppliers that have agreed to abide by certain guidelines when considering nuclear transfers? It seems that the list containing the Pakistani entities will for sure weaken the case of Pakistan for joining the group. However, it is also clear that these entities have no operational link with the Pakistani state.
The foreign office needs to work diligently on the issue at hand. At the same time, it is not only foreign office that should control the damage. Considering the fact that there exists a consistent camping – backed by India and supported by the US – to question Pakistan’s nuclear security, the government of Pakistan needs to investigate the claims made by the US to determine their authenticity. However, if found true the government should act appropriately
It is important to keep the fact in mind that Pakistan attaches the highest importance to nuclear security. It has the expertise, manpower, and infrastructure to produce civil nuclear energy and has pursued a policy of restraint as well as credible minimum deterrence. Pakistan’s nuclear security regime is supported by a strong command and control system, an integrated intelligence system, rigorous regulatory regime and active international cooperation. The security regime covers physical protection, material control and accounting, border controls and radiological emergencies. Pakistan has been regularly submitting reports to the UN Security Council 1540 committee on the measures that the country has put in place to exercise control over the transfer of sensitive materials and technologies. That is precisely in line with the criteria for admitting new members to the NSG.
As an actor of international society, Pakistan has complied with all the rules and regulations of the non-proliferation regime. If any group or company is operating from Pakistani soil that should not be an obstacle in granting membership of NSG to Pakistan if such group or company is dealt with according to the group’s demands.