New export licensing requirements from 1st January 2021: Dual-use exports to the EU and Channel Islands

In today’s blog, Alan Campbell, Research Integrity Manager in Edinburgh Research Office, highlights new export licensing requirements for the export of certain types of goods, technology and knowhow to destinations in EU member states and the Channel Islands.  The new requirements will come into force on 1st January 2021, as a result of the end of the Brexit transition period.

The end of the Brexit Transition Period on 31st December 2020 will mean new export licensing requirements affecting colleagues who wish to export dual-use goods, technology or knowhow to destinations in the European Union and the Channel Islands.

Dual-use items are goods, technology and knowhow which, although having an ostensibly peaceful purpose, could be turned to a military or WMD related use were they to fall into the wrong hands.  The items which are subject to export controls are listed in the UK Strategic Export Control Lists.

Until now, exports of dual-use material to EU member states and the Channel Islands have not required an export licence.  From 1st January 2021 however, all exports of dual-use items to EU Member States and the Channel Islands will require to be licenced.  The University of Edinburgh has taken steps to put the necessary export licence in place.

I plan to export a dual-use item to a destination in the EU or Channel Islands after 1st January 2021: what do I need to do?

The Open General Export Licence (Export of Dual-use items to EU Member States) will enable the export of most dual-use items to EU member states and the Channel Islands.  Open Licences like this one differ from many other export licences in that once an organisation such as the University has registered with the UK government to use it, there is no need to apply in advance for approval to make an individual export.  As long as the item to be exported fits the licence eligibility criteria, you simply make the export, while ensuring that you comply with the license conditions and the labelling and record keeping requirements.

Eligibility, labelling and record keeping are critical however, so in order to use the University’s Open General Export Licence to make a dual-use export to the EU or Channel Islands, you need to fill out Edinburgh Research Office’s EU and Channel Islands Dual-use export application and declaration form. 

You can access the form by emailing exportcontrol@ed.ac.uk .

Does the Open General Export Licence apply to all EU and Channel Islands dual-use exports?

No.  Exports of certain types of dual-use goods, technologies or knowhow are subject to stricter controls, or require advance notification to the UK government.  Examples of situations where you cannot use the Open Licence include (this list is non-exhaustive):-

  • Where the item to be exported is controlled under Category 0 of the EU Dual-use list (Nuclear materials, facilities and equipment).
  • Where the item to be exported is controlled under Annex IV to Council Regulation (EC) No 428/2009.
  • Where you are aware, have grounds to suspect, or have been informed by the UK government that the item to be exported is, or may be, intended for use in connection with chemical, biological or nuclear weapons development.

Edinburgh Research Office can help with advance notifications and licensing requirements for exports which aren’t eligible for the Open Licence.  For advice and help if you think any of these situations might apply, please contact exportcontrol@ed.ac.uk .

If you are unsure whether an item you plan to export is subject to an export licencing requirement, or if you have any other export control related questions, please contact exportcontrol@ed.ac.uk .

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