UK’s HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and ECJU Submit Evidence for 2017 Arms Export Annual Inquiry

UK FlagThe UK Committees on Arms Export Controls are conducting an inquiry examining the government’s 2017 Strategic Export Controls Annual Report. On June 24, 2019, both HMRC and the ECJU gave written evidence for the inquiry.  Continue Reading

Court of Appeal Rules UK Government Acted Unlawfully in Sale of Arms to Saudi Arabia

On June 20, 2019, the Court of Appeal handed down its judgment allowing Campaign Against Arms Trade’s (CAAT) appeal of the High Court’s decision. The claim brought by CAAT was for a judicial review of export licensing decisions made by the Secretary of State for International Trade in relation to military exports to Saudi Arabia, which could potentially be used in the conflict in Yemen.  Continue Reading

UK Export Control Unit (ECJU) Amends Export Control Order 2008

UK FlagThe ECJU has amended the Export Control Order 2008 through the implementation of Directive (EU) 2019/514. The Export Control (Amendment) Order 2019, which came into force on June 30, 2019, amends the list of defense-related products. The changes correspond to updates made to the European Military List. In addition, updates were made to remove Eritrea from the list of countries embargoed and subject to transit control for military goods, reflecting sanctions lifted against Eritrea.

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EU Issues Notice Redefining Rules Governing Control of Exports

RadarOn September 16, 2019, the EU issued a council decision amending the Common Position 2008/944/CFSP and defining the common rules governing control of exports of military technology and equipment.  Continue Reading

EU Decides to Suspend Issuance of License for Arms Export to Turkey

Euro_GavelIn response to the most recent developments in the Syrian conflict, the Council of the EU decided to halt arms exports licensing to Turkey on October 2019. This decision is based on the criterion that such exports could endanger regional stability. This decision is not a formal sanction, but it is a political declaration to which EU member states will adhere. Read more about this decision in our US-EU Export Controls and Sanctions Alert.

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EU Publishes Regulation Concerning Restrictive Measures in Nicaragua

On October 14, 2019, the EU published a regulation concerning restrictive measures in view of the situation in Nicaragua. The EU sanctions target persons and entities responsible for human rights violations or abuses, the repression of civil society and democratic opposition in Nicaragua, as well as persons and entities whose actions, policies or activities otherwise undermine democracy and the rule of law in Nicaragua. The sanctions consist of a travel ban and an asset freeze. The EU has not yet identified persons or entities subject to the sanctions.

For related US sanctions on Nicaragua, see our post here.

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US Wins Award in Airbus Subsidies Case

Airliner PerspectiveIn October, the US Trade Representative (USTR) announced that the US had won the largest arbitration award in the World Trade Organization’s (WTO) history, in its dispute with the EU over illegal subsidies to Airbus. The decision awarded US$7.5 billion, which is nearly twice the next largest award. The arbitrator calculated the amount of the award based on WTO findings that EU launch aid for Airbus was causing significant lost sales of Boeing large civil aircraft, as well as impeding exports of Boeing large aircraft to the EU, Australia, China, Korea, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates. Under WTO rules, the arbitrator’s decision is final and not subject to appeal.

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US Department of State Imposes Visa Restrictions on Chinese Officials for Repression in Xinjiang

On October 8, 2019, the Secretary of State announced visa restrictions on Chinese government and Communist Party officials believed to be responsible for, or complicit in, the detention or abuse of Uighurs, Kazakhs or other members of Muslim minority groups in Xinjiang, China. Family members of named persons may also be subject to these restrictions. The visa restrictions support the Department of Commerce’s imposition of export restrictions on US products exported to 28 entities, including elements of the Public Security Bureau and commercial companies in Xinjiang, involved in China’s campaign of surveillance, detention and repression.

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OFAC Enters Settlement With The General Electric Company for Violations of Cuba Sanctions

SanctionsIn early October, OFAC announced a US$2,718,581 settlement with The General Electric Company (GE) of Boston, Massachusetts. GE, on behalf of three GE subsidiaries, Getsco Technical Services Inc., Bentley Nevada and GE Betz (collectively, the “GE Companies”), agreed to settle its potential civil liability for 289 alleged violations of the Cuban Assets Control Regulations (CACR). Specifically, between December 2010 and February 2014, the GE Companies appear to have been in violation of CACR by accepting payment from The Cobalt Refinery Company (Cobalt), an entity identified on the SDN List since June 1995, for goods and services provided to a Canadian customer of GE. OFAC determined that GE voluntarily disclosed the apparent violations, and that the apparent violations constitute a non-egregious case.

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