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State Department Questions

  • I have an item that is on the U.S. Munitions List. Is that all I need to know about it for licensing purposes?

    No. You should determine whether it is designated as Significant Military Equipment (SME). SME means defense articles for which special export controls are necessary because of their substantial military utility or capability.

  • How can I tell if something is SME?

    Its easy. Just take a look at the USML. All items preceded by an asterisk are SME. The term SME also includes all classified USML articles.

  • What kinds of special export controls apply to SME?

    In order to export SME to a foreign person you will need to obtain a signed DSP-83 from that entity providing assurances that it will not
    (a) re-transfer the SME to anyone not specified in your approved license application, not
    (b) allow the SME to be used for purposes other than those for which furnished, without the prior written approval of the U.S. Department of State. If you plan on having your foreign customer manufacture any item of SME under a Technical Assistance Agreement (TAA) or Manufacturing License Agreement (MLA), Congress must be notified before State can approve the TAA or MLA.

    Before you can make a proposal to foreign person for the sale or manufacture of SME, you must obtain ODTCs approval if
    (a) the value of the item is $14 million or more,
    (b) the item is to be sold to a country other than NATO, Australia, Japan or New Zealand, and
    (c) the identical item has not been previously licensed for permanent export or approval for sale under the Foreign Military Sales program to any foreign country. If the item has been licensed previously for permanent export or approved for sale under FMS to any foreign country, you must notify ODTC at least 30 days prior to issuing a proposal. In each case (prior approval or prior notification), an approval license, TAA or MLA will be required in order to export any technical data as part of the proposal effort. If the SME article has a nonrecurring cost of $50 million or more, or a total production cost of $200 million or more, it is categorized as Major Defense Equipment (MDE). Any export of MDE valued at $14 million or more requires Congressional notification prior to receipt of export approval from the Department of State.

  • What is an export?

    For ITAR purposes, the word export means:
    (a) sending or taking a defense article out the United States in any manner. It also means transferring registration, control or ownership to a foreign person of any aircraft, vessel or satellite covered by the U.S. Munitions List, either in the United States or abroad;
    (b) disclosing (orally or visually) or transferring in the United States any defense article to an embassey, any other part of a foreign government, or to a foreign person; or
    (c) performing a defense service on behalf of a foreign person, whether in the United States or abroad.

  • How do you define United States for ITAR purposes?

    For ITAR purposes, United States means the several states, Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and any territory or possession over which the United States exercise any powers of administration, legislation, and jurisdiction.

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