The German Export Control Authorities BAFA has issued guidance on an ICP on export controls. Download the EN and DE versions + DE questionnaire for use in your company.
The foreign trade with commodities of strategic importance, mainly weapons, armaments and dual-use items, is subject to control. Dual-use items are goods, software and technology that may be used for civil and military purposes. A milling machine, for example, may be used for processing components for civil as well as military products.
Within the framework of its legal and international commitments, the export control policy of the Federal Government is oriented to the security need and foreign political interests of the Federal Republic of Germany. Particularly its security must not be threatened by conventional armaments and weapons of mass destruction.
German exports should neither intensify conflicts nor contribute to internal repression or other severe human rights violations in crisis areas. Its international involvement obliges the Federal Republic of Germany not to burden its foreign relations by critical exports.
With the increasing globalisation, efficient export controls are only possible on the basis of an intensified international and European co-operation.
The Federal Republic of Germany is a member of numerous international treaties and export control regimes aiming at the harmonisation of export control regulations and licensing policies. Of special importance are the lists of items established by the international regimes; these lists are technically updated in regular periods.
International Control bodies
There are four international export control bodies:
MTCR (Missile Technology Control Regime) – for items relevant for missile systems
Australia Group – for dual-use items relevant for chemical and biological weapons
NSG (Nuclear Suppliers Group) for items in the nuclear area
Wassenaar Arrangement – for armaments and dual-use items related to the area of conventional armaments
The export of dual-use items from the European Union has been harmonised to a large extent. It is subject to European law.
Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control regularly sends its experts to the meetings of the control bodies and the European union workgroups.
One of the Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control ’s main tasks is to check whether the export of a commodity is subject to licensing and if a licence may be granted.
An export licence is always required if the commodity is mentioned in the European or national list of items. Items covered by the lists range from weapons, ammunition and related production facilities via material, plants and equipment for nuclear purposes, high-grade materials, specific machine tools, electronic equipment, computers, telecommunications up to specific chemical units and chemicals. In addition to the licensing requirements for listed items, there are European and national licensing requirements depending on the use of the items. This "catch-all" clause normally applies to sensitive countries only. In the case of certain countries, technical support, as well as brokering activities, are subject to additional controls.
An export licence may be granted if the export does not impair the foreign policy and security interests of the Federal Republic of Germany. The legal and administrative problems are very complex when looking at the licensing procedure of dual-use items. Although the majority of them serve civil purposes, they can also be used in the military sector. Dual-use items make up the highest percentage of the millions of exports crossing the borders every year; normally, their intended use is not directly visible. The Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control decides on granting or refusing an authorisation after taking into consideration all the available information about the intended use. In a number of cases, the Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control takes such a decision only after political consultations with the Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy and the Federal Foreign Office. The granting of a licence is also made dependent on the exporter’s reliability. In this connection, the Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control may request the nomination of a person responsible for exports on the level of the management.
About the German ICP guidance
Compliance management programs that serve to support adherence to legal regulations, specifically regarding foreign trade, are referred to as internal compliance programs (ICP hereinafter).
The German BAFA has prepared this information leaflet is intended to help you to develop an ICP or to further optimize an already existing ICP. It presents under which conditions companies are required to install an ICP and identifies the criteria which constitute an effective ICP.
Questionnaire on ICP
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