In a perfect world, export control laws wouldn’t be necessary because there would be no bad guys. Unfortunately, such is not the case. We live in a world where we and others around the globe enjoy our personal freedoms, our rule of law, and other live-and-let-live social structures that are not embraced by some folks. Some folks, unfortunately, live under a my-way-or-the-highway mind set, and feel justified or compelled to try to impose their will on others. Recently, for example, we witnessed beheadings of two Americans by certain extremists. There are countless examples, and, make no mistake, freedom isn’t free.
To help promote and support a technological and military advantage by those we call our allies around the world, export control laws and regulations have been devised to eliminate or at least minimize the risks to our country and our allies by identifying certain products, software and technologies that could be used to do us harm. At the same time, these regulations create safe ways to limit the spread of these advanced goods, so they don’t fall into enemy hands. The U.S., Canada, NATO countries, Australia, and other counties under the umbrella of agreement such as the Wassenaar Arrangement, have all joined together to support these initiatives.
It may all sound very cloak and dagger, but in reality, these are core principals of national security and foreign policy and help keep us all safe in a complicated world. I’m grateful for these policy objectives and the countless men and women who help keep us all safe in so many ways.
Under various national, regional and international Acts, Codes, Regulations, Agreements and Arrangements, the myriad of policy objectives are organized and promulgated. In the U.S., the primary laws and regulations are as follows:
For an in-depth discussion of the legal authorities empowering U.S. export controls, see also:
Why should you comply to Export Control Laws?
There are the usual penalty provisions, so in the “don’t let this be you” category, you may wish to be sure that you and your company don’t violate export control laws. The penalties are significant.
Moreover, it’s simply to do the right thing, and to be a good corporate citizen should be enough, eh?
What should you do to make sure you’re making it happen to stay Compliant to Export Control Laws?
If you are entrusted with creating and implementing an Export Control Compliance Program in your company, know that you are doing good work that helps to keep us all safe. Be sure to have robust Policies and Procedures, and, as we’ll see next month, get support and engagement from Upper Management, who sets the tone at the top.
Here’s an example of a robust Export Control Manual that identifies the moving parts of a solid export control program:
Include a Training Program that reaches all levels of your organization so all parties can be your eyes and ears and prevent unauthorized exports. And implement a robust Export Control Audit Program so that you can test all your policies and procedures and make sure they are working the way that they should to keep us all safe.
Enjoy your Thanksgiving with all your treasured family secret recipes, and…
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© Randi S. Waltuck, 2014 All Rights Reserved. RWaltuck@LivingstonIntl.com
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