Defense and Dual Use Controls

Defense Trade: Export Controls and Licenses

Generally, any person or company who intends to export a defense article must obtain the approval of DDTC prior to the export. In the case of defense export transactions (defense articles such as munitions), any person or company who intends to export such an article must first obtain approval from the U.S. Department of State Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) prior to the export. The DDTC, under the Arms Export Control Act (AECA) and the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), is charged with controlling the export and temporary import of defense articles and defense services covered by the United States Munitions List (USML). It has among its primary missions (a) taking final action on license applications for defense trade exports and (b) handling matters related to defense trade compliance, enforcement, and reporting. The appropriate license form must be submitted to the DDTC for the purpose of seeking approval. In most cases, in order for a license to be considered, you first must be registered with the DDTC.

Section 655 Annual Military Assistance Reports are provided to Congress and show for a fiscal year the aggregate dollar value and quantity of defense articles and defense services authorized as direct commercial sales to each foreign country. Note that these reports do not cover defense articles and services that are provided via the Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program.

Dual Use Export Controls

Dual use licenses are required in certain situations involving national security, foreign policy, short-supply, nuclear non-proliferation, missile technology, chemical and biological weapons, regional stability, crime control, or terrorist concerns. Most export transactions do not require specific approval from the U.S. Government. Licensing is required for "dual use" exports (commercial items which could have military applications). Before shipping your product, make sure you understand the concept of dual use and the basic export control regulations.