The CTBT was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1996. Australia signed the CTBT on 24 September 1996 and ratified the Treaty on 9 July 1998.
The CTBT makes a key contribution to both non-proliferation and disarmament. It serves as a practical step toward nuclear disarmament and as an effective non-proliferation measure by limiting the technological development of nuclear weapons. The Treaty contains a specific list of countries that must ratify in order for the CTBT to enter into force. Of these 44 countries, listed in Annex II to the Treaty, three (DPRK, India and Pakistan) are yet to sign and five (China, Egypt, Iran, Israel and United States) have signed but are yet to ratify the treaty.
The Australian Safeguards and Non-Proliferation Office (ASNO) is Australia's National Authority for implementation of the CTBT and coordinates Australia's contribution to the development of its verification system. Australia will host the third largest number of monitoring facilities for the CTBT of any state, which is being developed in cooperation with the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organisation (CTBTO).
The network of the CTBT's monitoring facilities in the Pacific and Indian Oceans have played an important role in providing seismic data for Tsunami warning purposes.