The Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) has implemented new restrictions on exports and reexports to Burma, and transfers (in-country) within Burma, of sensitive items subject to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) in response to the military coup and escalating violence against peaceful protesters. BIS has also added to the Entity List four entities – two Burmese military and security services entities responsible for the coup and two commercial entities that are owned and operated by one of those entities.
In one of today’s final rules, BIS removes Burma from Country Group B and places it in Country Group D:1. This action results in a more restrictive review of license applications for exports and reexports involving items subject to the EAR to any end user in Burma. It further renders end users in Burma ineligible for or subject to further restriction with regard to use of certain license exceptions for exports, reexports, and transfers (in-country). These license exceptions include Shipments of Limited Value (LVS), Shipments to Group B Countries (GBS), and Technology and Software under Restriction (TSR). The full list of license exceptions impacted by this change is included in the rule on public display in the Federal Register.
This rule also subjects Burma to ‘military end use’ and ‘military end user’ restrictions under the EAR, resulting in a license requirement for exports and reexports of certain items intended for military use or users and allowing military end users to be identified through the ‘Military End-User List’ in Supplement No. 7 to Part 744 of the EAR. Applications to export or reexport items to Burma for a ‘military end use’ or ‘military end user’ will be reviewed under a presumption of denial. Further, BIS is applying the license application review policy for national security-controlled exports and reexports to Burma consistently with the policy applied to similar transactions involving the People’s Republic of China, Russia, and Venezuela.
In an additional final rule, BIS has added the Burmese Ministries of Defence and Home Affairs, the Myanmar Economic Corporation, and the Myanmar Economic Holding Limited to the Entity List. This action restricts the export and reexport of items subject to the EAR to the Burmese Ministry of Defence and the Burmese Ministry of Home Affairs, the entities responsible for the coup, and to two commercial entities owned and operated by the Ministry of Defence and that provide it revenue.
The Entity List is a tool utilized by BIS to restrict the export, re-export, and transfer (in-country) of items subject to the EAR to persons (individuals, organizations, companies) reasonably believed to be involved, or to pose a significant risk of becoming involved, in activities contrary to the national security or foreign policy interests of the United States. Additional license requirements apply to exports, re-exports, and transfers (in-country) of items subject to the EAR to listed entities, and the availability of most license exceptions is limited.
The Department of Commerce released the following statement:
“The United States remains fully committed to the people of Burma, and strongly condemns violence by the Burmese military against peaceful protesters. We will not allow the Burmese military to continue to benefit from access to items subject to the EAR. Commerce is reviewing potential additional measures as warranted by the military’s actions. The U.S. government will continue to hold perpetrators of the coup responsible for their actions.”