The indefinite extension of the Nuclear Non-proliferation Treaty (NPT) in 1995 was agreed to in the context of a collective commitment by States Parties to strengthening the Treaty’s review process and, in particular, with a heightened sense of the need for mutual accountability in the implementation and furtherance of the aims of the Treaty. In 2000 states agreed (in step 12 of the 13 practical steps) that such accountability would be advanced by a more formalized approach to reporting by each State Party to its Treaty partners, providing regular information on the actions taken and policies followed to meet the requirements of the Treaty and to implement additional measures agreed to in the review process. The framers of the reporting obligation understood reporting―as they understood the review process itself―to be a potential prod to the more effective pursuit of nuclear disarmament. States Parties to the NPT have now had nine specific occasions to submit the “regular reports” that were agreed to in the Final Document of the 2000 Review Conference (RevCon), and included in the 2010 Action Plan. Of 189 NPT states parties, only three have reported to each PrepCom and RevCon in the period 2002-2012.
This publication summarizes the reporting to date, provides background to the reporting commitment, reviews the continuing discussion of the appropriate scope and format of reports, broadly surveys the content of reports submitted, and recommends ways in which reporting can be strengthened and thus better meet the principle of accountability that was emphasized as part of the 1995 indefinite extension of the Treaty.