National Implementation of the Biological Weapons Convention

Article IV of the Convention requires each State Party to “take any necessary measures to prohibit and prevent the development, production, stockpiling, acquisition, or retention of the agents, toxins, weapons, equipment and means of delivery specified in Article I of the Convention, within the territory of such State, under its jurisdiction or under its control anywhere”.


In order to fully implement the Biological Weapons Convention, its States Parties are obliged to translate the commitments found in the Convention into effective national action. 

These necessary measures depend on the circumstances and legal systems of each State Party, and as such there can be different approaches to implementing the provisions of the Convention nationally.

Consideration of the topic ‘national implementation’ by States Parties during intersessional programmes

Intersessional Programme 2018 – 2020

States Parties are considering the following topics at the annual Meetings of Experts on Strengthening National Implementation (MX3) and the annual Meetings of States Parties in 2018, 2019 and 2020:

  • Measures related to Article IV of the Convention
  • CBM submissions in terms of quantity and quality
  • Various ways to promote transparency and confidence building under the Convention
  • Role of international cooperation and assistance under Article X, in support of strengthening the implementation of the Convention
  • Issues related to Article III, including effective measures of export control, in full conformity with all Articles of the Convention, including Article X

Further information on the deliberations can be found in the respective meeting reports. In 2018, the Implementation Support Unit prepared a background information document on ‘strengthening national implementation ‘. A corrigendum in 2018 and an updated version in 2019 are also available.

Previous Intersessional Programmes

States Parties considered the topic “strengthening national implementation” during the 2012-2015 intersessional programme as a standing agenda item. Further information on common understandings reached by States Parties on the topic can be found in the respective meeting reports.

States Parties considered the topic “Ways and means to enhance national implementation, including enforcement of national legislation, strengthening of national institutions and coordination among national law enforcement institutions.” during the 2007 Meeting of Experts and Meeting of States Parties.

Further information on common understandings reached by States Parties can be found in the respective meeting reports.

National Contact Points

In order to improve implementation efforts, States Parties should designate National Contact Points. These National Contact Points are individuals or entities responsible for:

  • Coordinating national implementation and communicating with other States Parties and relevant international organizations
  • Preparing and submitting the annual Confidence-Building Measures (CBM) reports
  • Exchanging information on universalization efforts

To assist States Parties in this task, the Implementation Support Unit has developed a nomination form for National Points of Contact and makes the contact details of all designated National Contact Points available to all States Parties on a separate, restricted access page. Further information about access to the page can be obtained from the Implementation Support Unit.

National Contact Point nomination form