The United States has a responsibility, or so the State Department tells us, to ensure the sales and exports of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) are consistent with U.S. national security interests, U.S. policy, and even U.S. values. While the government would be glad to keep the export of military drones in lock-step with our policy goals, the realities of a rapidly expanding UAS market and global competition has forced export regulators to consider how to balance the potential loss of economic opportunity against the loss of control of UAS technology.
Continue Reading Read the Directions Carefully Before Playing: State Department Releases Military Drone Export Guidance

Every time there is a new round of reforms under the President’s Export Control Reform initiative, we hear the same advice:

  1. Controls on certain items are eliminated or reduced (which creates new opportunities for manufacturers and exporters); but
  2. The new rules bring new complexities, so be careful.

Attorneys in the export control space correspondingly inundate us with articles advising, in effect, call your export control lawyer.

Continue Reading Military Electronics Export Reform: Let the Chips Fall Where They May

The U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) has amended the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to restrict exports to Venezuela of certain items intended for “a military end use or end user.”  These changes complement a pre-existing U.S. arms embargo against Venezuela – in place since 2006 – that was imposed because of Venezuela’s failure to cooperate on counterterrorism initiatives.
Continue Reading Drop Your Weapons: The United States Restricts Military Exports to Venezuela

The Year Mark

Apparently, it is now fashionable among my peers to host elaborate parties in honor of the first birthdays of their children. I have attended a number of these fêtes, and been impressed to just what lengths the parents will go to celebrate twelve months of growth and achievement for a Guest of Honor who will almost certainly not recall the event. However, we at the Global Trade Law Blog are nothing if not fashionable (thanks to our firm’s Fashion and Apparel blog – your move, “white shoe” firms) and are not to be left out of the latest trend.  As such, we are throwing our own birthday party, celebrating the first anniversary of Export Control Reform.

Continue Reading ECR Episode IX: The Export Control Reform Turns One – What are Your Plans for the Big Celebration?

In the country pubs of Ireland, it has long been the practice of the barkeep to “stand the third round” for good customers, meaning to offer the third drink for free.  The practice makes sense both as customer appreciation and as an inducement for those fine customers to continue their revelries right where they are.  The third round represents a tipping point for the patron from an after-work drink to a full night out: the transition from a quiet pint or two, to a full investment in the proceedings.  When the bartender stands the third round, the now-happy, soon-to-be-elated customer is encouraged to see matters through to the evening’s finish.
Continue Reading ECR Episode IX – Serving up the Third Round: The Next Wave of Export Control Reform Takes Effect on July 1, 2014

The pressure on Russia continues to build.  As we previously reported here and here, throughout March, the United States and other Western powers implemented a series of sanctions against individuals and entities deemed to be involved in the political destabilization of Ukraine.  Those sanctions were restricted to specific parties, including high ranking Russian and Ukrainian officials and – notably – one Russian bank.
Continue Reading Starving the Bear: The United States Restricts Exports to Russia

Next week will mark one year since President Obama introduced the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) to the nation in his State of the Union Address.  Although the TTIP received only a brief nod in the President’s speech, the TTIP initiative has moved forward at a stunning pace . . . well, a stunning pace for an international trade negotiation, a process that normally crawls along.  As discussed in this blog, the U.S. and European parties to this proposed partnership set an ambitious goal of finalizing an agreement by the end of 2014.  A year into the process, we take a look at the progress to date and the challenges to come.
Continue Reading Just the TTIP: A Review of the Transatlantic Partnership Agreement One Year After It Is Introduced to America

By: Reid Whitten

On June 15, the European Union put into effect some 271 changes to its dual-use export control regulations.  The changes represent an update of the entire European export regime to incorporate numerous changes made in accordance with international agreements reached in the past few years.
Continue Reading ALERT – Changes Coming to Europe’s Dual-Use Export Regulations

By: Curt Dombek, Brian Weimer, Dan Brooks, and Reid Whitten

Since 1999, strict controls on the export of U.S. satellites and satellite components have drastically eroded U.S. manufacturers’ market share in the global satellite industry.  On April 18, 2012, the U.S. Departments of State and Defense released the “1248 Report” containing findings related to reducing some of those controls.  The 1248 Report assesses the national security risks of removing certain satellites and related components from the tightly controlled United States Munitions List (USML) and transferring them to the generally less restrictive Commerce Control List (CCL).  The report concludes that most communications satellites, lower-performing remote sensing satellites, and related components could be transferred from the USML to the CCL without harming U.S. national security.  The transfer of these items to the CCL could greatly benefit the U.S. satellite industry by significantly easing the export controls placed on its products.
Continue Reading Proposed Easing of Satellite Export Controls Could Benefit U.S. Satellite Industry

By: Reid Whitten and Scott Maberry

How did five of the most prominent freight forwarders shipping goods subject to the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), suddenly become ineligible as carriers for ITAR exporters? The answer begins with a Sherman Antitrust action by the U.S. Department of Justice and ends, for the moment, with a major gap in logistics, supply chain, and transport for companies manufacturing, trading, or exporting ITAR-controlled products.
Continue Reading On The List, Off The Menu: How 5 Major ITAR Shippers Disappeared