950608 Fact Sheet: U.S. Exports: Foreign Policy Controls  Return to: Index of "Arms Control, Counter-terrorism and Military Affairs || Electronic Research Collections Index || ERC Homepage

U.S. Department of State
95/06/08 Fact Sheet: US Exports: Foreign Policy Controls
Bureau of Public Affairs

Fact Sheet:  U.S. Exports:  Foreign Policy Controls

Exports are vital to the U.S. economy. They provide jobs and enable the 
country to import goods to meet domestic demand.  The U.S. imposes 
certain controls, however, to ensure that exports are consistent with 
U.S. foreign policy requirements.  Most controls apply to sensitive 
dual-use equipment and technology that could support activities contrary 
to U.S. national security and foreign policy interests.  They affect 
less than 5% of the value of current exports.  The controls relate to 
specific foreign policy concerns worldwide and/or to specific countries 
of concern under the authority of the 1979 Export Administration Act 

Foreign Policy Export Controls

Counter-Terrorism Controls.  Using EAA Section 6(j) authority, the 
Secretary of State has designated Cuba, Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Libya, 
Sudan, and Syria as countries that repeatedly have provided support for 
international terrorism.  Broad, country-specific export controls are in 
place for these countries.

Crime Control Equipment.  These controls regulate the export of crime 
control and detection instruments, equipment, and related technology to 
all countries, except to NATO member countries or to Japan, Australia, 
and New Zealand.  Generally, licenses are issued unless the U.S. has 
human rights concerns about the government of the importing country or 
about the ultimate consignee.

Regional Stability.  Exports of equipment used to manufacture military 
arms and equipment and some military transportation equipment are 
reviewed to ensure that such exports would not contribute to the 
destabilization of the region or country of destination.

Anti-Apartheid.  The U.S. prohibits the export to South Africa of all 
military and police equipment and all items covered by the UN mandatory 
arms embargo.

Missile Technology.  The U.S. cooperates with other countries in the 
peaceful uses and exploration of space but seeks to halt the development 
of unmanned delivery systems for weapons of mass destruction.  
Worldwide, the U.S. controls the export of munitions and commercial, 
dual-use equipment and technology that could be used to develop such 

Chemical/Biological Weapons. The U.S. works with other countries to halt 
the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons (CBW).  To this 
end, the U.S. controls the export to all destinations of a broad range 
of microorganisms and toxins. Exports of 54 precursor chemicals are 
controlled worldwide, except to Australia Group countries. Exports of 
certain dual-use equipment that may be relevant to chemical or 
biological weapons programs are controlled to specific regions and 
states.  All commodities subject to CBW controls are prohibited to 
countries that provide support for international terrorism, including 
Cuba, Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Libya, Sudan, and Syria.

Nuclear Controls.  The U.S. assists other countries in using atomic 
energy for peaceful purposes, but also seeks to halt the spread of 
nuclear weapons.  Exports of nuclear items are controlled under the 1954 
Atomic Energy Act, as amended by the 1978 Nuclear Non-Proliferation Act. 
Nuclear transfers (e.g., reactors, nuclear fuel, and other products) 
require either rigorous bilateral Agreements for Cooperation with the 
recipient country to ensure that IAEA safeguards and adequate physical 
protection are observed or separate government assurances regarding 
safeguards, no nuclear explosive use, and retransfers. Commerce-
licensed, nuclear-related, dual-use commodities may require various 
other conditions. These can include recipient government assurances, 
end-user statements, post installation checks, or other license 

Short Supply.  Controls occasionally are necessary to protect the 
domestic economy from an excessive drain on scarce materials.  Congress 
has legislated restrictions on the export of crude oil, unprocessed 
Western red cedar logs, and horses for export by sea (to prevent 
unauthorized slaughter abroad).

Supercomputers.  The U.S. requires the licensing of supercomputer 
exports worldwide, except to Canada and Japan.

U.S. Treasury Department Transaction Controls

The U.S. Treasury Department controls U.S. trade and financial 
transactions with Cuba, Iraq, North Korea, Libya, Vietnam, and 
Serbia/Montenegro.  It also controls transactions with Haiti and 
regulates imports from Iran.  Certain exceptions to these controls are 
granted under general or specific licenses issued by the Treasury 
Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control.  Contact the licensing 
office at (202) 622-2480.

Guidance for Exporters

For regulatory advice on foreign policy export controls, consult the 
U.S. Export Administration Regulations (15 CFR 730-799, revised 
annually).  Copies are available from the U.S. Government Printing 
Office (tel. 202-783-3238, stock no. 903-014-00000-8) and the U.S. 
Department of Commerce's Exporter Counseling Division (tel. 202-482-
4811).  For additional information, consult the annual foreign policy 
report to the Congress, which also is available from the Bureau of 
Export Administration, Department of Commerce.

For information on the Treasury Department's trade and financial 
controls on Cuba, Haiti, Iran, Iraq, North Korea, Libya, 
Serbia/Montenegro, and Vietnam, call the Treasury Department's Office of 
Foreign Assets Control at 202-622-2520 and the U.S. Department of 
Commerce's Office of Exporter Services, Export Counseling Division at 

June 8, 1995


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