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American Shipper

Arms export controls earn India license exception

The step up on the strategic trade authorization list means that exports of U.S. technologies controlled for reasons other than national security will be less restricted.

   The Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) has adopted a strategic trade authorization Tier One (STA1) export license exception policy for India, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said during the Indo-Pacific Business Forum at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C., on Monday.
   The United States usually only reserves STA1 license exceptions for countries that are members of the four multilateral export control regimes, but India has taken a strong enough approach to arms export controls to earn the STA1 status, Ross indicated.
   “It’s a very elevated status from an export control point of view, and it’s because India has partnered with us to improve its own export control regimes and has met most of the multilateral export rules that we think are useful,” Ross said.
   India is a member of the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies, the Australia Group for control of dual-use chemical and biological technology, and the Missile Technology Control Regime, but is not a member of the Nuclear Suppliers Group, although it is a nuclear state.
   India is the 37th country on BIS’ list of countries eligible for the STA1 license exception. The exception provided for specific countries is relevant to exports, re-exports and transfers for which a license is required under the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).
   Granting STA1 status provides India supply chain efficiency for defense and other high-tech products, reduces the amount of time involved in the export process and should provide U.S. firms with a competitive advantage, Ross said.
   Over the last seven years, STA1 would have covered about $9.7 billion in exports to India, yet India will likely order more exports from the United States as controls become less restricted under the new license exception, he said.
   STA1 authorizes exports, re-exports and in-country transfers of products and technologies controlled for multiple reasons, whereas STA2 authorizes such transactions for products and technologies controlled only for national security reasons.
   To name a few, other reasons for control of products and technologies include chemical and biological weapons, nuclear nonproliferation and missile technology.

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