All publications

Under the current Council Decision, FRS will publish a series of Research Papers on the various aspects of the Code, as well as short Issue Briefs to highlight specific thematic and regional issues, and a major technical study. To find out more, go to our Project Activities

Issue Briefs

The HCoC and Northeast Asian States

A majority of Northeast Asian states currently possess or seek to acquire ballistic missiles, producing a missile race and an increase in the number of tests as states are developing their capabilities further. Proliferation risks also remain high, and it is noteworthy that only South Korea and Japan have joined the MTCR.

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Research Papers

The Hague Code of Conduct and Space

This paper considers the dual approach of the Code by analysing the similarities between launchers and ballistic missiles in light of new technical developments, and assessing the risk of missile technology proliferation. It also assesses the new trends and developments in the space sector that may have an impact on the ability of the HCoC to remain relevant in its efforts to curb the proliferation of ballistic launchers.

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Issue Briefs

The Hague Code of Conduct in the Middle East

The HCoC holds special significance in the Middle East as the region is fraught with the development of ballistic arsenals, the use of missiles on the battlefield and the proliferation of such systems towards both states and non-state actors. Moreover, several ballistic missile programmes have been closely associated with WMD acquisition.

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Research Papers

Harnessing Transparency Potential for Missile Non-Proliferation

Information is key for non-proliferation efforts. But the times when information was the exclusive purview of governments are over. Affordable, commercial and open-source monitoring capabilities empower states and societies alike, while challenging the ability of governments to preserve secrecy. Technological democratisation means that information is practically becoming a public good. And it allows for unprecedented transparency.

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Issue Briefs

The HCoC and Southeast Asian States

Only three out of ten Southeast Asian states have joined the HCoC to date (the Philippines, Cambodia and Singapore). This limited rate is noteworthy as Southeast Asia is increasingly concerned by the ongoing ballistic missile competition in broader Asia. Moreover, the region is actively investing to benefit from space technologies.

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Research Papers

The HCoC and China

China is currently the main ballistic missile possessor and spacefaring nation which remains outside the Hague Code of Conduct against Ballistic Missile Proliferation (HCoC). This can be explained by China’s traditional opacity regarding its deployment of strategic missiles, but also its exports of ballistic systems or technologies abroad. This absence is nonetheless problematic for a regime based on voluntary transparency and confidence-building which aims at universality.

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Issue Briefs

The HCoC and Space

The New Space trend – an ongoing innovative transformation of the space sector – has led to a rise of investment in small launch systems. While an increasing number of nations are gaining access to space, the number of private sector entities investing in this domain is also rising. Meanwhile, small space launch vehicles and ballistic missiles rely on increasingly similar technologies.

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Issue Briefs

The HCoC and Latin America

Latin America is one of the regions with the highest level of support for the HCoC. This support reflects the historic commitment of the region in favour of disarmament and non-proliferation. The remaining four non-subscribing states – Bolivia, Brazil, Cuba and Mexico – have voiced concerns about the adoption of the Code outside the United Nations framework and its limited scope.

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Issue Briefs

The HCoC and South Asia

India’s and Pakistan’s ballistic missiles are mostly designed as delivery vehicles for their nuclear weapons. While intrinsically linked to their national security, ballistic missiles also have regional security implications for South Asia. Non-proliferation and arms control efforts have so far been aimed at the bilateral level. Subscription to other instruments including the HCoC remains low in the region, although India joined the HCoC in 2016.

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Issue Briefs

The HCoC and African States

While both ballistic programmes and the risk posed by these systems remain very limited on the African continent, ballistic missiles inherently constitute a global risk – due to their range and destructive potential. Instruments such as the HCoC, which seek to limit the proliferation of such systems, are therefore relevant for African countries.

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Research Papers

Ballistic missiles and conventional strike weapons: Adapting the HCoC to address the dissemination of conventional ballistic missiles

The Hague Code of Conduct aims at curbing the proliferation of missiles capable of carrying weapons of mass destruction. Today, with an important increase in ranges, these weapons are more and more used for a conventional mission, by a variety of states. This dissemination illustrates the fact that many stakeholders master the technologies necessary to build and sustain these weapons. But it also raises questions on the possible destabilising effects of these arsenals, even when they are not linked to WMDs.

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