All of the participants in the Australia Group are States Parties to the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention (BWC), which has been in force since 1975. They have also been active in efforts to strengthen the Treaty, including through active participation in the confidence building measures agreed by successive BWC review conferences, and in annual meetings since the Fifth Review Conference in 2001.
Article I of the BWC prohibits States Parties from developing, producing, stockpiling, or otherwise acquiring or retaining biological agents and toxins, or related biological weapons or equipment. Article III of the BWC obliges States Parties to prevent the transfer of materials which might assist the manufacture, or any means of acquiring, biological weapons. The Australia Group's activities serve to support the objectives of the BWC by enhancing the effectiveness of national export licensing measures.