Pakistan’s nuclear security “most improved”: NTI Index 2020

Pakistan’s nuclear security “most improved”: NTI Index 2020

Pakistan improved seven points in the ranking by Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI)

Leading US non-proliferation watchdog Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI) in its latest annual report ranked Pakistan as the most improved in security for countries holding nuclear materials. Pakistan’s overall score improved by seven points. NTI is a benchmarking project for nuclear security that ranks 176 countries.   

“Pakistan’s improvements in the Security and Control Measures category are significant because strengthened laws and regulations result in durable boosts in Pakistan’s score as well as provide sustainable security benefits,” the watchdog said.

Pakistan’s Ambassador to the United States, Asad Majeed, said that “we welcome that NTI categorizes Pakistan as the most improved country for nuclear security measures in its Nuclear Security Index 2020.”

Former US diplomat Laura E Kennedy commended Pakistan’s improvement in security ranking.

“One welcome bit of news reported by #NTIindex is that #Pakistan ranked as most improved in security of those countries holding nuclear materials,” her tweet read.

Continuous Progress

The report mentioned Pakistan notably improved in the Security and Control Measures category due to new regulations that have been put in place. The report also mentioned an improvement in the Global Norms category by the nuclear-armed state. Pakistan has been making steady progress over the years, with eight points in 2014, two in 2016, and six in 2018. The score improvements were due to better regulations and on-site physical protection over the years. In terms of regulations, this was Pakistan’s best improvement since 2012.

 “In 2016, it passed new cybersecurity regulations. In 2018, it improved its insider threat protection. Its newest regulations mark a much larger shift.”

Aussies top in nuclear safety

Australia remained at the top of the tree for a fifth year with Canada and Switzerland tying for the second spot. Amongst nations with nuclear facilities in the sabotage ranking, Australia ranked at the top, followed by Canada and Finland. New Zealand and Sweden shared the top honors in the theft ranking for countries without weapon-usable nuclear materials.

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