Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Thirty-Third Report


Memorandum by the Department of Trade and Industry


1. The Committee has asked the Department to explain why the Regulations could not have been drafted earlier so that they could have been made and laid without breaching the 21 day rule.

2. The Council Regulation (EC) No. 1334/2000 was adopted on 22 June 2000 allowing a bare three months for the making of the necessary national legislative provisions for the application of the Regulation's mandatory provisions in the UK. The final form of the Regulation was not finalised until late in May 2000. It replaced the existing regime for the control of exports of dual-use goods, created a new Community General Export Authorisation, extended the export controls to exports of technology by intangible means and included further options for Member States. The relationship of the new Regulation to the old one and the extension of the control regime to exports by intangible means was a complex task for which an implementation period of three months was always going to be challenging, particularly in the light of the fact that a substantial part of that period would fall into peak holiday time of the year. Work on the implementation in fact commenced at about the time of the adoption, if not slightly before it. In the event, it did not in practice prove possible to complete the preparation of the Regulations in time for the instrument to be made and laid in accordance with the original timetable which would have meant that the 21 day rule would not have been broken. It was not possible simply to extend that timetable because the new matters, including the Community General Export Authorisation, had to be in operation in the UK on the date the Regulation entered into force in Community Law.

20 November 2000

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