Further memorandum from the Government
Unclassified section of HMG's letter of 29
June 2006 to Quadripartite Committee
SECTION C: OTHER
3. Why has the median time taken to determine
SIELs increased from 12 days in April-June 2005 to 15 days in
Due to a typographical error, the figure should
read 13 days and not 15.
4. Does the Government plan to make three
years the standard length of an OIEL?
OIEL applications are considered on a case by
case basis. Based on an assessment of the goods and destination,
an OIEL may be issued with a validity of between two and five
5. Are strategic exports to the Channel Islands
and the Isle of Man subject to the full requirements of the Export
Control Act 2002? What controls apply to exports from the Channel
Islands and the Isle of Man to the UK and to the rest of the world?
Section 11(3) of the Export Control Act 2002
states that the removal of goods to the Isle of Man shall not
be regarded for the purposes of ECA 02 as an exportation of those
goods. The Export of Goods, Transfer of Technology and Provision
of Technical Assistance Order at 2(1) states that "exportation"
is defined as "to any destination outside the UK and the
Isle of Man". In other words, any export of strategic goods
from the Isle of Man is subject to the same controls as exports
from the mainland.
The Channel Islands are not included in the
scope of the ECA 02. Therefore, any transfers of strategic goods
to the CI's are deemed to be exports for the purposes of UK strategic
export controls and are subject to all the normal licensing procedures.
Exports from the CI's to othernonUK destinations
are a matter for the CIs government. In practice, the government
of the CIs will consult HMG before exporting strategic goods.
It is understood that strategic exports from the CIs are very
6. Why has the Quarterly Report for October-December
and the refusals information not been placed on the FCO web-pages?
This was an administrative error that has now
been rectified. Thank you for bringing this to our attention.
7. The Independent published an article with
the headline "Africa and the curse of the AK-47" on
6 April. It states: "Figures based on customs records kept
by the UN and obtained by The Independent show that between
2001 and 2003, Britain sent arms worth £515,000 into Sudan,
the bulk of it a single consignment of bombs, grenades, ammunition
and mines worth £420,000." The Committee would be grateful
for the Government's view on this statement, for details of the
licences issued, particularly that covering the £420,000
consignment, and, given the human rights record of the Sudanese
government stretching back many years, the grounds on which the
Government concluded these licences would be in accordance with
the EU code of conduct on arms exports.
These allegations, which were first raised in
2004, have been investigated by the Government and found to be
baseless. The UK adheres fully to the EU arms embargo on Sudan,
which has been in force since 1996.
We contacted the UN in 2004 when these allegations
first surfaced. The UN advised that their information was based
on Sudanese reporting. Given doubts as to their veracity,
it was agreed that the UN would revert to the Sudanese authorities
for confirmation. To-date, we have not received any information
from the UN to support the allegations.
Nevertheless, the allegations have been fully
investigated by the Government. To allow for extant licences,
the period 1999-2003 has been scrutinised. Our records show that
the only export licences issued for Sudan covering ML listed items
were for "military cargo vehicles" and "body armour".
The total value of these licences was £47,200.64p. Information
on actual exports from the UK is, of course, a matter for HMRC.
HMG was asked a parliamentary question on this
issue. Lord Alton in January 2005 asked: Whether the finding of
the United Nations Commodity Trade Statistics Database (Comtrade)
that the United Kingdom has exported 180 tonnes of arms to Sudan
since 2001 is correct. [HL75526 January 20051].
Answer: ". . . The United Nations International
Trade Centre and the United Nations Statistics Division have told
us that their statistics are based on Sudanese reporting, and
they would revert to the Sudanese authorities for clarification.
We have as yet received no information to support the statistics
Comtrade published. If we do, we will investigate further and
action will be taken against any UK person or entity found to
be in breach of UK legislation implementing the arms embargo against