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9. Multilateral weapon and technology export controls



I. Introduction

II. The Zangger Committee, the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the Australia Group and the Missile Technology Control Regime

III. The Wassenaar Arrangement

IV. Adaptation of the EU dual-use export control system

V. EU efforts to control intangible transfers of technology

VI. Restructuring and operation of the European defence industry: implications for export control

VII. Conclusions


Read the full chapter [PDF].


In June 2000 the European Union made important changes to its system for controlling the export of dual-use technologies. In recent years the problem of how to control intangible transfers of technology has come to be perceived as an issue of growing importance in non-proliferation policy. The pattern of trade has often come to include transfers of information and knowledge needed to establish local research, development and production in other countries.


The number of states that participate in export control cooperation continues to grow steadily. The states that participate in these cooperation arrangements continue to modify their export control policies and practices in the light of their discussions. Of particular importance are the revisions to export control principles and procedures that are intended to prevent unauthorized transfers of controlled items while taking into account the changing nature of industrial organization—including both ownership patterns and production.


The changes in export control policies and practices in 2000 were most noticeable in Europe and, in particular, within the EU. The legal basis for the implementation of export controls was modified significantly during the year. As a result of the provisions contained in the 1997 Treaty of Amsterdam, the EU also has significant new instruments that can be brought to bear in the field of non-proliferation and arms control. Therefore, in Europe the discussion of non-proliferation and export control has to take into account not only the complexities of the changing market for controlled items but also the changing political and legal framework associated with the evolution of the EU. While a legal basis exists for the development of comprehensive and coherent policies, the implementation of such policies is still an evolving process.



Appendix 9A. Documents agreed at the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls Plenary

Full text Appendix 9A [PDF].

The appendix reproduces the texts of 'Elements for Export Controls of Man-Portable Air Defense Systems (MANPADS)', 'Best Practices for Disposal of Surplus/Demilitarised Military Equipment', 'Extreme Vigilance: Sub-set of Tier 2 (VSL) Items, "Best Practices"’—'Best Practices for Effective Enforcement'

Dr Ian Anthony