The updated version of A Guide to Canada's Export Control List (the Guide) will come into force on July 23, 2021, replacing the previous December 2018 version of the Guide. Amendments to the Export Control List (ECL) published in the June 23, 2021 edition of the Canada Gazette Part II incorporate the updated version of the Guide by reference.
Canada updates the ECL and Guide periodically to reflect updates to Canada's multilateral export control commitments. This latest round of changes incorporates changes through December 31, 2020. A tracked change version of the Guide is available here in English and French.
Canadian exporters of goods and technology subject to export controls, or of any goods or technology with potential military or strategic applications (i.e., dual-use items) including notably computers, electronics and telecommunications technology and software, should review the updates to determine whether they affect the control status of their products. Companies that violate export control requirements can face significant legal, financial, commercial and reputational risks.
The Guide is Canada's detailed list of items subject to export restrictions under Canada's Export and Import Permits Act. It contains the detailed technical specifications and interpretive notes necessary to determine whether goods and technology are subject to export controls.
While some of the control categories in the ECL are unilateral Canadian controls, most categories accord with international control regimes. Canada is party to the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies, the Nuclear Suppliers Group, the Missile Technology Control Regime, the Australia Group (for non-proliferation of chemical and biological weapons) and the Arms Trade Treaty. Participating states typically meet on an annual basis to negotiate and discuss proposed changes to lists of goods and technology for export control.
Canada updates the Guide to reflect changes to negotiated international control schedules under the multilateral export control and non-proliferation regimes to which Canada is a party. Most of the updates to the Guide clarify the scope of existing controls through grammatical edits and technical notes, but some expand the scope of controls on certain categories of items. A synopsis of the updates is included below.
Global Affairs Canada (GAC) also recently launched a new EXCOL portal for export permit applications. Exporters can submit export permit and certification applications or request amendments. Existing users of the previous system should have been automatically enrolled as a user of the new EXCOL portal. Registered users have access to features such as the ability to check the status of an application, to submit quarterly utilization reports and to print selected documents. Exporters can also submit one-off applications through EXCOL as a guest user without creating an account, but this option has limited features.
A notable procedural change is that along with these amendments, the Government of Canada has streamlined its process to amend the Guide. GAC will now update the Guide on a rolling basis to align it with the multilateral export control regimes, rather than once per year to two years as was past practice. Changes will enter into force 30 days after they are published without the need to amend the Export Control List. Companies that are registered users of EXCOL will be notified of updates via email. Exporters will have a 30-day notice period to familiarize themselves with the updates.
GAC will continue to consult exporters who may be affected by changes before any regime negotiations. Exporters can contact GAC's Export Controls Policy Division to provide any suggestions or feedback on specific proposals.
The amendments made to Group 1 align with the Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies, as amended by WA-LIST (19) 1 at the Plenary Meeting in Vienna, Austria held on December 4 and 5, 2019. Due to COVID-19, the Wassenaar Arrangement (WA) Plenary did not have an opportunity to conduct an in-depth technical review in 2020. The WA Control Lists (WA-LIST (19) 1) adopted by the December 2019 Plenary therefore remain in force in 2021.
Export controls now apply to the following technologies:
The Guide clarifies controls on:
Technical and decontrol note(s) regarding:
The Guide now applies export controls to:
The Guide modified and/or added defined terms used in Group 1 and 2. These terms include:
No items were added to or removed from Group 3. The Guide clarifies the controls on the following:
Canada uses Group 5 to administer commitments under various free trade agreements and to further strategic and national security interests. The Guide now reflects export controls introduced last year on skim milk powders, milk protein concentrates and infant formulas (Item 5200). The Guide also clarifies controls on sugar-containing products such as sugars, syrups and molasses.
The updates clarify the export controls on:
Technical notes for turbojet and turbofan engines; and integrated navigation systems were added.
New export controls apply to:
The Guide clarifies the following:
The amendments to Group 7 mostly align with the Schedule 1 of the Chemical Weapons Convention and the Australia Group’s Common Control Lists (February 2020).
No updates were made to the export controls listed under Group 9.