Backgrounder: Amendments to the Export Permits Regulations
Modernizing the regulatory requirements for export permit applicants for military and strategic goods and technology and certain forest products
The Export Permits Regulations (the Regulations) establish requirements on the information that permit applicants must provide as part of the export permit application process, and the procedures governing the issuance and use of exports permits for “Strategic and Military Goods and Technology” and “Certain Forest Products” listed on the Export Control List. Specifically, these Regulations relate to Export Control List Groups 1-4, 6, 7, 9 and Items 5101 to 5103, 5400, 5401 and 5501-5505.
Separate regulations exist that address other items on the Export Control List. Specifically, the Export Permit (Steel Monitoring) Regulations, the Export Permit Regulations (Non-strategic Products) and the Export Permit Regulations (Softwood Lumber Products 2015).
Proposed amendments to these regulations and the associated Regulatory Impact Analysis Statement were published in the Canada Gazette on June 18, 2022 for a 30-day public comment period ending July 18, 2022. A few minor changes have been made to the pre-published version for the sake of clarity. The final version of the Regulations, that came into force on June 1, 2023, were published in the Canada Gazette on June 21, 2023, and are also available on the Export Controls webpage.
The purpose of the amendments is to align the regulations with existing permit application processes. The benefits of these amendments are to increase regulatory clarity and certainty.
The amendments reflect current operational requirements and align the regulations with information already required from applicants in practice and policy, and in the Export Controls Online System (NEXCOL). With respect to military and strategic goods and technology, the amendments also reflect requirements described in the Export and Brokering Controls Handbook (the “Handbook”).
These amendments also respond to correspondence received by the Standing Joint Committee for the Scrutiny of Regulations regarding two previous amendments to the Regulations.
What has changed?
It is important to note that the changes to the regulatory text in this initiative do not result in any changes to the application process for export permit applicants for military and strategic goods and technology and for certain forest products. A small number of updates are being made in NEXCOL to provide additional clarity and to be more explicit on certain information requirements.
The regulatory amendments update some outdated elements in the Regulations and align the Regulations with policies and practices already in place, as encoded in NEXCOL. Updating the regulations also improve clarity for exporters and facilitate compliance.
The following are the key amendments made to the Export Permits Regulations:
- Issues raised by the Standing Joint Committee for the Scrutiny of Regulations:
- The Department amended the Regulations to create an exhaustive list of information elements to be furnished by permit applicants. This way, the Regulations prescribe an exhaustive instead of a discretionary list, which is not in accordance with the Export and Import Permits Act.
- Amendments to the French version of the Regulations address the Committee’s observation that paragraph 3(2)(b) of the French version of the Regulations is inconsistent with the English version of that paragraph.
- Modernization of the Regulations (to match current process):
Below are the key changes to the Regulations:
The Export Permits Regulations apply to both strategic and military goods and technology, as well as to certain forest products. Consequently, for the sake of clarity, the Department created two separate sections for these goods and technology: section 3 for “Strategic and Military Goods and Technology” and a new section 4 for “Certain Forest Products”. Both sections comprise an exhaustive list of information elements to be furnished by permit applicants for the export of the relevant group of goods.
For the section on Strategic and Military Goods and Technology, a new paragraph allows the Department to request a number of specific, additional documents in certain instances that can be beneficial for the Department’s assessment of an export permit application. These include a copy of the commercial invoice, a copy of the purchase order and a copy of the letter of credit or other financial documentation, including bank transfers or authorizations. At the same time, the amendments specifically remove the requirement to provide certain information, as this information is no longer required under NEXCOL.
The new section 4 in the Regulations titled “Certain Forest Products” has similarly been developed to reflect current practice and to provide greater certainty regarding the information required to support export permit applications.
Other elements of the amended Regulations include updates to (1) tombstone information requirements and (2) process issues:
- From a tombstone information requirement perspective, the amendments require applicants to provide their email address along with that of the consignee(s). The amendments also add a requirement to provide a fax number, but this requirement will be preceded by the words “if any” as fax machines have fallen out of use. These amendments track the existing data fields in NEXCOL.
- From a process perspective, the requirements related to exports by mail or courier service were removed from the Regulations, as this is no longer how those facilities operate. Exporters must submit their permit along with any other documentation required by the Canada Border Services Agency at a customs office. Furthermore, current portions of the Regulations related to the issuance of permits and to lost permits were removed, as they are no longer relevant due to the electronic nature of the NEXCOL system. The portion related to amendments to permits were modified for the same reason.
Exporters who have any questions regarding this amendment should contact:
The Export Controls Policy Division:
Export Controls Policy Division (TIR)
Global Affairs Canada
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, ON. K1A 0G2
Tel: 343-203-4331 / Fax: 613-996-9933
If the questions or comments relate to certain forest products, please also include the Softwood Lumber Division in your correspondence at:
Softwood Lumber Division (TNS)
Global Affairs Canada
125 Sussex Drive
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0G2
Tel: 343-203-5386 / Fax: 613-944-2491
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