Sudan No Longer Subject to AT1

Frequent exporters of aircraft parts (like those of you who read this blog) are probably familiar with reason for control AT1 (Antiterrorism) found in the Export Administration Regulations. Most aircraft parts and many avionic and communication articles are controlled for export purposes as ECCN 9A991.d and 7A994, respectively. These two ECCNs are controlled only for reason AT1. And as anyone who has attended an ASA export workshop knows, when we consult the Commerce Country Chart (Supplement No. 1 to part 738 of the EAR), there was a lonely, lonely X in the AT1 column next to Sudan.

But no longer.

As of last month–January 14th to be specific–Sudan is no longer designated a State Sponsor of Terrorism. As a consequence, the Bureau of Industry and Security amended the EAR to remove the Antiterrorism control from Sudan and also remove Sudan from Country Group E:1, leaving Iran, North Korea, and Syria as those countries designated as terrorist supporting countries. The consequence of this change is that the 9A991.d- and 7A994-controlled articles that make up a significant percentage of civil aircraft parts and avionics will no longer require a license for export to Sudan. It also means that Sudan, as a new addition to Country Group B, will now be eligible for several license exceptions that can make exporting parts easier. (Note that it is always important to review the exact text of a license exception you wish to use, as there are several country-specific carveouts in many exceptions.)

This has been in the works for some time, as Sudan has been engaging bilaterally with the United States and has taken steps to ensure that it has not in the past six months and will not in the future provide support for acts of international terrorism. Four years ago BIS took steps to ease the export of aircraft related items to Sudan. Prior to 2017, applications for licenses to export to Sudan were reviewed under a general policy of denial, meaning an applicant would typically have to show a compelling reason for the license to issue. In January 2017, BIS revised its licensing policy to a general policy of approval for “parts, components, materials, equipment, and technology that are controlled on the CCL only for anti-terrorism reasons and that are intended to ensure the safety of civil aviation or the safe operation of fixed-wing, commercial passenger aircraft.” Articles controlled for reasons other than AT1 (such as avionic units like AHRS controlled for reason MT1) continued to be reviewed under a general policy of denial.

Taking a more permissive stance with respect to the export of aircraft parts to support civil aviation safety is a practice we have seen in other bilateral contexts. Previously, the United States used the export of civil aircraft parts to support civil aviation safety as a carrot during the negotiations leading up to the Iran JCPOA (the Iran nuclear deal from which the U.S. later withdrew). A safe civil aviation sector is an important economic driver and everyone benefits by improving and ensuring aviation safety.

Sudan is thus open for business–at least as far as most civil aircraft parts are concerned. It is important, however, to ensure your export compliance system verifies each transaction prior to export, because the status of countries and parties can change quickly. Just because a party was clear yesterday does not mean it will be clear tomorrow, and like Sudan, just because a destination is forbidden one day does not mean it will remain forbidden forever. If you have questions about whether an export license is required to ship an article to a destination like Sudan or anywhere else, or whether a license exception applies or how to use it, be sure to check with your export compliance counsel.

One Response to Sudan No Longer Subject to AT1

  1. Pingback: BIS clamps down on certain exports to Myanmar (Burma) | ASA Web Log

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