FRS has been conducting a project on the Hague Code of Conduct against ballistic missile proliferation (HCOC) since 2009. On 18 December 2017 support for the Hague Code of Conduct and ballistic missile non-proliferation in the framework of the implementation of the EU Strategy against proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) was reaffirmed in Council Decision 2017/2370/CFSP. The project implemented by FRS was also renewed for three years, and its activities updated.

The context of ballistic missile proliferation in a number of regions of the world is a cause of growing concern for the international community including the European Union. The Council Decision mandated FRS to implement activities in support of the HCOC, in keeping with the EU objectives of promoting the universalisation of the Code, improving its implementation and reinforcing its visibility. The beneficiaries include the European Union, EU Member States, HCOC non-subscribing States, HCOC subscribing States, regional and international multilateral fora. More broadly, all countries and populations can benefit from the enhancement and implementation of the transparency and confidence-building measures foreseen in the Code.

The overarching aim of the project is to raise awareness about the threat posed by ballistic missile proliferation, to increase the effectiveness of multilateral instruments fighting proliferation, and to help interested countries reinforce their national export control regimes and improve exchanges of relevant information.

Specifically, most actions aim at training relevant officials on the content and obligations associated with subscribing to the Code. This included presenting the obligations subscribing states must abide by and the mechanism necessary to join the Code, explaining the day-to-day functioning of the instrument and the different ways of integrating a subscription to the Code into a non-proliferation national strategy. They also aim to encourage the debate around the instrument and possible ways to improve it to reduce the threat posed by missiles.

The project is divided into four main types of actions: the organisation and implementation of outreach events, in both New York and Vienna in the margins of international meetings, and in third countries, especially in non-subscribing states to the HCOC; the publications of food-for-thought papers related to ballistic proliferation; the preparation and distribution of communications and information material; and the development of a website dedicated to efforts in promoting the Code and activities organised in the framework of the project.

Point of contact: Emmanuelle Maitre


Research fellow
Research fellow
Senior research fellow
Senior research fellow
Secretary General
Senior research fellow


The HCoC at Twenty, November 2022
The HCoC and Space, September 2021
The HCoC and China, September 2021
« Ballistic missile proliferation: what should be the role of a small state? », Natasha Fernando, Sanoj Jayakody, 2019
« Making the Hague Code of Conduct Relevant », Dennis Gormley, 2009
« Missile Control? », UNIDIR, 2007