5th Review Conference Key Resources

What is the Fifth Review Conference?

The OPCW hold a Review Conference every five years to look back on the progress made in upholding the CWC, to discuss important issues related to the CWC, and to plan for the future of the convention. The conference unites States Parties, members of industry, international organizations, and civil society to ensure that the discussions are inclusive and comprehensive.

What will be discussed?

The OPCW website states that RC5 will focus on:

  • The role of the OPCW and the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC) in strengthening international peace and security, including preventing chemical weapons re-emergence
  • Maintaining readiness to respond to use or threats of use of chemical weapons
  • Science and technology developments relevant to the Convention’s implementation
  • Promoting peaceful applications of chemistry and ensuring safe production and secure use of chemicals
  • Promoting universality of the CWC

Why is it significant?

The CWC has been enormously successful since it entered into force in 1997. With all but four nations as States Parties to the convention and as we near the destruction of the last declared stockpiles, the CWC has achieved some of its main priorities. This Review Conference occurs at a pivotal moment as we enter a new phase of the CWC, reflecting on the progress made up to now and mapping out the future of the convention.

Dr. Paul Walker, Chair of the CWC Coalition, and Mina Rozei, CWCC Project Coordinator, will be present in the Hague for the duration of the conference, so please be sure to connect with us at [email protected].

Please take a moment to let us know if you plan on attending the conference in person hereIf you do not plan to attend in person, then you do not need to fill out the form.


Schedule and Resources

The Fifth Review Conference will take place from May 15 – 19, 2023 at the World Forum in The Hague.

Here is the information from the OPCW that we have regarding the conference’s provisional schedule and organization.

Morning sessions start at 10:00 and afternoon sessions start at 15:00, unless otherwise decided by the Conference.

  • The conference will be streamed starting on Monday, May 15.
  • All public documents can be found here.
  • The provisional agenda can be found here.
  • You can find all relevant information pertaining to RC5 on the OPCW’s website.

NGO Statements

If you have not already done so, please don’t forget to review and endorse the joint NGO statements here.

Statements are still available for endorsements, but these endorsements will not be on the official record of conference proceedings of the OPCW.

    • NGO statements will be presented on Tuesday, May 16. 

Side Events

In addition to the official plenary sessions of the Conference of the States Parties in The Hague, the annual Conference also features several side events that take place over the course of the week. 

The CWC Coalition organizes the NGO Open Forum, a side event that provides NGOs with the opportunity to present their work on topics relevant to the object and/or purpose of the CWC and foster discussion with Conference delegates, the Technical Secretariat, and other stakeholders. This year, we will be hosting two side events.

Both of our side events will take place on Wednesday, May 17 in Yangtze Room 1:

  • 13:15 – 14:00: Open Forum
  • 14:00 – 14:45: Victims of Chemical Weapons

Be sure to check out the other side events as well:

  • May 15, 9:15-9:45 in the room Yangtze 1: “Preserving future of CW prohibition through collaboration”
  • May 15, 13:15-14:00 in the room Yangtze 1: “OPCW should go chem-bio convergence”
  • May 16, 9:15-9:45 in the room Yangtze 1: “OPCW should go universality through regional cooperation”
  • May 16, 13:15-14:00 in the room Yangtze 1: “OPCW should go industrial cybersecurity”

Additionally, “A Conversation with NGOs,” an event hosted by the Permanent Representations of Canada, Germany, Norway, the United States of America, and the European Union, will be taking place on Monday, May 15, from 18:30 – 20:00 CET at the Norwegian Residence. Registration is required. We strongly encourage you to register as soon as possible.


Background Resources

If you can’t join us in The Hague, you will be able to follow the proceedings online via several channels:

The CWCC Twitter

The CWCC LinkedIn


Summary of Key Conference Events of Interest to CWC Coalition Members:

Monday, May 15

  • 10:00-15:00 CET – opening of RC5
  • 18:30 CET – “A Conversation with NGOs” event at Norwegian residence

Tuesday, May 16

  • Afternoon (time TBA) – NGO joint statements delivered at plenary session

Wednesday, May 17

  • 13:15-14:00 CET – Open Forum Side Event
  • 14:00-14:45 CET – Victims of Chemical Weapons Side Event