On 2 December 2020 , the Federal Republic of Germany has contributed €1M to the Trust Fund for Security and Business Continuity of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).
This specific funding will allow the OPCW to keep enhancing its digital preparedness from a business continuity perspective, thus ensuring that the Organisation is ready to meet current and future challenges.
The German contribution was formalized at the OPCW headquarters in The Hague during a ceremony between the Permanent Representative of Germany to the OPCW, Ambassador Gudrun Lingner and the OPCW Director-General, H.E. Mr Fernando Arias.
In a short statement during the ceremony, Ambassador Lingner underlined the importance of enhancing OPCW resilience in times of crisis. This had become very clear during the COVID-19 pandemic. Inspired by lessons learned during the difficult past months, Germany has initiated informal consultations among States Parties in order to facilitate consensus on using virtual meeting modalities in emergency circumstances for the OPCW Policy Making Organs, particularly for the Executive Council. Ambassador Lingner stated, that for this purpose the technological capabilities of the OPCW also needed to be enhanced. Therefore, Germany had decided to make a significant voluntary financial contribution of €1M to the OPCW Trust Fund for Security and Business Continuity. This German contribution aimed at allowing the OPCW to become even more resilient and ready to meet current and future challenges. For an effective global ban on chemical weapons, a robust OPCW was needed.
The Director-General stated that this very significant contribution would help the OPCW to upgrade its business continuity capabilities, which will have profound implications on the integrity of the Organisation’s operations. These improvements were essential for the continued successful work of the OPCW. DG Arias expressed his gratitude to the German Government for once again showing its unwavering commitment to the Organisation and its engagement for the mission to rid the world of chemical weapons.
The Trust Fund for Security and Business Continuity helps the OPCW to enhance its digital resilience and thus ensures the protection of the Organization’s operations, staff and data. The OPCW has been working in recent years to ensure greater resilience of its information technology, which includes investments in modern IT solutions that are secure, resilient, and foster collaboration across the Technical Secretariat. Furthermore, the Trust Fund also allows the OPCW to deliver solutions and infrastructure that enable meetings and communication with States Parties when in-person events are not feasible.