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Dual use controls | Brussels, 9 September 2021

Commission’s actions to implement new EU Export Control Regulation - Memo

The Commission has initiated a series of actions to effectively implement and enforce the new Export Control Regulation (EU) 2021/821 that enters into force on 9 September 2021 following its adoption on 20 May 2021.

The entry into force of the new Regulation is the last step in the process of modernisation of EU export controls on sensitive dual-use goods and technologies. It will enhance the EU's capacity to tackle evolving security risks and emerging technologies, protect human rights and support secure supply chains for strategic items.

As part of its actions to implement the new Export Control Regulation, the Commission has already undertaken a number of preparatory steps:

  • Relaunching discussions with Member States in the dedicated "Surveillance Technology Expert Group" (STEG) and stepping up work on the preparation of EU human rights due diligence guidelines for the export of cyber-surveillance technologies;
  • Setting up of an “Emerging Technology Expert Group” (ETEG) drawing on Member State expertise to help develop an EU framework to address the risks associated with trade and technology transfers of such emerging technologies (see Factsheets setting out preliminary EU assessments of certain emerging technologies);
  • Working with Member States on guidelines to deliver the high level of transparency required under the new Regulation with respect to licensing data, including the publication of annual reports providing comprehensive information of the application of controls in the EU;
  • Supporting the consistent implementation of controls throughout the EU through concrete actions, e.g. introducing an EU electronic licensing platform to make it more efficient for the competent authorities and companies to process export applications (See e-Licensing videos in English, French, Italian and Romanian);
  • Setting up an Enforcement Coordination Mechanism to support the work of national law enforcement agencies throughout the EU, and developing the Dual-use electronic System (DUeS) to enhance information exchange between relevant services in the Commission and the Member States;
  • Introducing new EU General Export Authorisations (EUGEAs) for exports of encryption and for intra-company technology transfers in order to simplify licensing procedures and thus benefit EU companies.

The Commission also fully recognises the key role of exporters as a "first line of defence" for addressing the risks posed by trade in dual-use items to international security and human rights, and is committed to pursuing efforts for engagement and outreach to industry and academia, as well as with civil society. Developing a "partnership with the private sector" to support compliance and the effective implementation of EU export controls is an essential pillar of the modernisation of EU export controls. As an important step in that process, the Commission plans to hold the annual Export Control Forum on 8 December 2021.

Finally, the Commission is convinced that export controls work most effectively in cooperation with partners and allies as part of multilateral efforts to uphold international obligations and commitments. In this respect, the new Regulation provides a strong basis for the EU to engage with third countries in order to support a global level-playing field and enhance international security through more convergent approaches to export controls at global level. In particular, the Commission actively contributes to the setting up of an Export Control Working Group under the Trade and Technology Council, see EU-US joint Statement of 15 June 2021, as part of a renewed transatlantic partnership.

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