Effective 1 May 2019, the list of strategic goods being transshipped in or in transit in Singapore needing a strategic goods permit will be expanded.

Currently, under the Strategic Goods (Control) Act (“SGCA”) strategic goods permits must be obtained when strategically controlled military and dual-use goods are being exported from, transshipped in or brought in transit in Singapore. For trade facilitation, the regime also provides strategic goods permit exemptions when certain items are transshipped or brought into transit in Singapore’s Free Trade Zones (“FTZs”) and meet the applicable transshipment / transit requirements.

The list of dual-use items ineligible for FTZ transshipment and transit strategic goods permit exemptions will be expanded from 1 May 2019. There will also be an expansion to military goods in transit ineligible for strategic goods permit exemptions. Items that are not eligible for permit exemption when transshipping or transiting in an FTZ are listed in the Fourth Schedule (Transshipment) and Fifth Schedule (Transit) to the Strategic Goods (Control) Regulations. On 25 February 2019, Singapore Customs released Circular Number 04/2019 detailing a further list of items across several code categories that will be added to the Fourth and Fifth Schedules (effective 1 May 2019). We include a link to the circular here.

Examples of items needing a permit for transshipment or transit from 1 May

For military goods ­– naval vessels and components along with military aircraft and components will no longer be eligible for transit permit exemptions. For dual-use goods – specific codes under the special materials and related equipment, materials processing, sensors and lasers, navigation and avionics, and aerospace and propulsion categories will no longer be eligible for transshipment and transit exemptions.  From 1 May 2019, transshipment or transit (as applicable) of the added items will require strategic goods permits under the SGCA, even if their shipment activity is confined to FTZs.

Action to take

Most new additions to the Fourth and Fifth Schedules are specific to the sub-category code level.  Supply chains with sensitive technology and utilizing Singapore FTZs will need to check if they currently rely on SGCA strategic goods permit exemptions and if this changes 1 May 2019.  If the goods fall under the newly added category codes in the Fourth and Fifth Schedules, from 1 May 2019, strategic goods permits will need to be obtained.

For additional information, please contact the authors, Ken Chia and Anne Petterd.