I have the honour to take the floor on behalf of the European Union. The Candidate Countries Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey and Croatia?, the countries of the Stabilisation and Association Process and potential candidates Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro, and the EFTA countries Iceland and Norway, members of the European Economic Area, align themselves with this statement.
1. The EU strongly supports the establishment of Confidence and Security building measures as an instrument to create transparency and hence to overcome mistrust, misunderstandings and miscalculations especially in situations and areas of tension. European countries have highly benefited from the CBMs and CSBMs which were introduced in Europe in particular through the CSCE/OSCE process. In other regions of the world, Confidence Building measures have played and in future can play an important role, especially in areas of tensions and in all phases of a crisis or conflict, including the post-conflict phase. The EU is interested in closer co-operation with other regions in this field.
2. The diversity in CBMs and CSBMs is extensive. EU member states actively participate in transparency measures in the different multilateral fora as well as in several verification mechanisms. At the global level in the UN, several very useful CBMs such as the Register of Conventional arms, the Military Expenditure notification system and the database on legislation on transfer of arms are in place. All these instruments have proven to increase confidence between states.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.