Background

The U.S. has moved to restrict exports to, and impose sanctions on, various entities and individuals in Burma following a military coup in that country.

For more information on these restrictions and ways to ensure compliance, please contact Kristine Pirnia.

Export Restrictions. The Bureau of Industry and Security has announced the following actions, effective Feb. 11.

- presumption of denial for items requiring a license for export and reexport to Burma’s Ministry of Defense, Ministry of Home Affairs, armed forces, and security services

- revocation of certain previously issued licenses for exports to these departments and agencies that have not been fully utilized

- suspension of license exceptions previously available to Burma as a result of its current country group placement under the Export Administration Regulations, including GBS (shipments to Country Group B countries) and TSR (technology and software under restriction)

Additional steps are under consideration, including possible additions to the Entity List, adding Burma to the list of countries subject to the EAR’s military and military intelligence end-use and end-user restrictions, and downgrading Burma’s country group status.

Sanctions. To implement a Feb. 10 executive order, the Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control has imposed sanctions against ten individuals and three entities connected to the military apparatus responsible for the coup. The three entities (all involved in the gem and jewelry industry) are wholly-owned subsidiaries of a large conglomerate owned or controlled by Burma’s military.

Under these sanctions all property and interests in property of the specified individuals and entities, and of any entities of which they directly or indirectly own 50 percent or more (individually or with other blocked persons), that are in the U.S. or in the possession or control of U.S. persons, are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. Unless authorized by a general or specific license issued by OFAC or otherwise exempt, all transactions by U.S. persons or within (or transiting) the U.S. that involve any property or interests in property of designated or otherwise blocked persons are generally prohibited.

In a Feb. 11 statement the White House said these sanctions “need not be permanent,” suggesting they could be lifted once Burma’s military “restore[s] power to the democratically elected government, end[s] the state of emergency, release[s] all those unjustly detained, and ensure[s] peaceful protestors are not met with violence.”

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