On 19 November 2020, the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany has contributed €500,000 to the special Trust Fund for the construction of a Centre for Chemistry and Technology („ChemTech Centre“) of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).
Ambassador Lingner was pleased to announce Germany’s second contribution to this flagship project, now bringing German contributions in 2020 to a total of €1.5M. The new ChemTech Centre will enhance the OPCW’s capabilities for capacity building, training, and international cooperation. In addition, the Centre will be essential for guaranteeing the scientific excellence of laboratory analysis within the OPCW.
The Director-General expressed his gratitude to the German Government and noted: „This contribution represents a major step in bringing the ChemTech Centre into existence. Germany’s resolve and support has been indispensable to this undertaking which will place a state-of-the-art facility at the heart of OPCW’s battle against chemical weapons.“
45 countries, the European Union, and three other donors have contributed or pledged to contribute financially to the ChemTech Centre project.
The project to build a new ChemTech Centre seeks to strengthen the OPCW’s capabilities to fully address the threat of new and emerging chemical weapons and contribute to the OPCW’s capacity-building and international cooperation activities. The current OPCW Laboratory and Equipment Store fulfills these tasks already to some extent and is central to the effectiveness and integrity of the verification regime of the Chemical Weapons Convention. However, due to its ageing infrastructure, space constraints, larger workloads, and new challenges, the current facility will soon no longer be fit-for-purpose.
A new facility is required to meet the demands of OPCW Member States for enhanced verification tools, improved detection capabilities and response measures, as well as increased capacity-building activities. The ChemTech Centre will also help the OPCW to keep pace with developments in science and technology and new chemical weapons threats. Construction of the ChemTech Centre is scheduled to begin in 2021 and the building is currently planned to be operational by the end of 2022/beginning of 2023.
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