Control policy for strategic goods and services

Goods and services for military use can pose a threat to international security. The government therefore carries out advance checks to see whether certain goods might fall into the wrong hands. These checks are conducted on the basis of risk assessments.

Export control policy for strategic goods

Dutch export control policy is based on the following 8 criteria agreed by the European Union (EU).

The goods must not pose a threat to:

  1. the international obligations and commitments of EU member states;
  2. human rights and international humanitarian law in the recipient country;
  3. internal security in the recipient country;
  4. regional peace, security and stability;
  5. the national security of EU member states and their allies.

The following points must also be taken into account:

  1. the recipient country's behaviour towards the international community: if a country supports terrorism, no arms may be exported to it;
  2. the risk that the goods will be diverted within the recipient country or re-exported in an undesirable manner;
  3. the recipient country should not spend significantly more on defence than on socioeconomic policy.

A more detailed version of these criteria appears in the EU's Common Position on the rules governing control of exports of military technology and equipment.

Strategic goods and services

Dutch export control policy focuses on 3 categories:

  • Military goods

    Tanks, guns and ammunition are examples of military goods.
  • Dual-use goods

    Dual-use goods have both civil and military applications. For example, certain fire retardants used in the construction industry can also be used to manufacture poison gas.
  • Strategic services

    Repairing and maintaining military or dual-use goods and teaching people how to use them are examples of strategic services. The same applies to supplying certain types of software.

Application forms for the import, export and transit of strategic goods

Application forms for the import, export and transit of strategic goods are available on the website of Customs' Central Import and Export Office (CDIU).

Implications of US export controls for the Netherlands

US export regulations sometimes also apply to companies and individuals outside the United States. The Dutch authorities do not check goods for compliance with these regulations, so businesses need to be aware of US legislation. Information on US export control policy is available on the website of the US Bureau of Industry and Security.

Licences for the import, export and transit of military goods in the EU

Goods must not pose a threat to public health, security or the environment in European countries. Products such as nuclear fuels and rocket engines therefore do not fall under the free movement of goods. The EU maintains a Common Military List of goods that fall into this category. Businesses must apply for a licence to export military goods.

Licences for the import, export and transit of dual-use goods in the EU

Most dual-use goods are used in consumer products, such as chemicals for medicinal drugs and chips for computers. Companies that sell such products in the EU do not require a licence. However, all trade documents, such as quotations and invoices, must state that these products are subject to mandatory licensing if they are exported outside the EU.

See also

Ministry responsible