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Planning for Trade Issues 2020 | Dual-use & export controls

05 February 2020

The European Union operates a system of controls of sensitive items from its Member States. These controls form part of a global framework designed to prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, to preserve regional stability and to protect human rights.

The items of commerce controlled under this framework include:
  • Dual-use items, i.e. items that have both civil and military application
  • Military equipment
  • Firearms
  • Items that can be used for capital punishment, torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatments
  • Exports to countries subject to EU trade sanctions
A breach of the controls laid down in Regulation (EC) No 428/2009 would constitute a serious offence and could result in the guilty party being liable to a fine or imprisonment in addition to reputational damage.  Irish companies exporting dual-use products (which may include hardware or technology) will be subject to the provisions of Regulation (EC) No 428/2009, which in practice means that a licence is required for exportation of dual-use items to destinations outside of the EU.

Note: The recast of the Dual-Use Regulation is expected in 2020. This is now in trialogue between the Commission, the European Council and the European Parliament, however, discussions are believed to be slow. It is expected that this process will be finalised in 2020 and the new recast Regulation will be published.


How BDO can help

BDO can assist companies determine their level of risk with regards to exportation of dual-use items and liaise with the Department of Business, Enterprise & Innovation on their behalf with the purpose of securing an export licence. 

For more information on dual-use and export controls, please contact a member of the Customs team at [email protected].