Category

United Kingdom

Category

UK extends China arms embargo to Hong Kong In Notice to Exporters 2020/12 (22 July 2020), the Export Control Joint Unit said: On 20 July 2020 the Foreign Secretary informed Parliament in an oral statement that the UK has taken measures, given the new National Security Law which China has imposed on the people of Hong Kong So we will extend to Hong Kong the arms embargo that we have applied to mainland China since 1989 and…

The Court of Appeal handed down its judgment in the case of Lamesa Investments Ltd v Cynergy Bank Ltd [2020] EWCA Civ 281 on 30 June 2020. The case appealed a 2019 High Court judgment that found that Cynergy Bank Limited was entitled to refuse to pay interest payments to Lamesa Investments Ltd, under a facility agreement, due to a concern that Cynergy would be subject to US secondary sanctions (please see our previous blog post here). The Court dismissed…

On 7 July 2020 the Secretary of State for International Trade informed Parliament in a written statement that she has retaken her decisions regarding licences for military exports to Saudi Arabia for possible use in the conflict in Yemen, in accordance with the Judgment of the Court of Appeal of 20 June 2019. The Court of Appeal last year ruled that the government had erred in law in its decision-making processes on arms export licences to Saudi…

On Monday 6 July 2020, the UK introduced the first sanctions under its new Global Human Rights sanctions regime, targeting 47 individuals and 2 entities. The regulations setting out the sanctions are made under the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2018 (the “Sanctions Act“) and impose asset freezes and travel bans on individuals and entities responsible for or involved in serious violations of human rights. The Sanctions Act was introduced to allow the UK to…

On June 2, 2020, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced that his office is beginning investigations into digital services taxes that have been adopted or are being considered by a number of our trading partners. The investigations will be conducted under Section 301 of the 1974 Trade Act. This provision gives the USTR broad authority to investigate and respond to a foreign country’s action which may be unfair or discriminatory and negatively affect US Commerce. …

On June 2, 2020, the United States Trade Representative (USTR) announced that his office is beginning investigations [Docket No. USTR-2020-0022] into digital services taxes that have been adopted or are being considered by a number of the US’ trading partners. The investigations will be conducted under Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974. This provision gives the USTR broad authority to investigate and respond to a foreign country’s action which may be unfair or…

On May 5, 2020, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and UK International Trade Secretary Liz Truss announced the formal launch of trade agreement negotiations between the US and the UK. The announcement said: In light of the ongoing global pandemic caused by Covid-19, the first round of negotiations will be conducted virtually, with UK and US negotiators engaging in discussions over the next two weeks in nearly 30 different negotiating groups covering all aspects of…

On 24 April 2020, the European Commission published Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/568 (the “Implementing Regulation”), which prohibits the export from the EU of certain personal protective equipment unless a licence is first obtained from an EU Member State authority. The Implementing Regulation came into force on 26 April 2020. The Implementing Regulation replaces the temporary export controls imposed by the Implementing Regulation (EU) 2020/402 published on 15 March 2020, as amended by Implementing Regulation (EU)…

On 3 April 2020, the European Commission issued its Decision granting relief from customs duty and import VAT exemptions for equipment necessary for combating the COVID-19 outbreak, following its announcement of its intention to do so on 20 March 2020 (please see our previous blog post here). Goods will only be exempt from customs duty and import VAT if they: are imported by or on behalf of State organisations, or by or on behalf of organisations approved by…

On 20 March 2020, the Export Control Joint Unit (ECJU) of the Department for International Trade published a Notice to exporters 2020/08: coronavirus (COVID-19) – export licence handling. The notice states that the ECJU is taking measures to ensure minimum disruption to the export licence application process, as well as to the advice they provide. The ECJU has identified processing applications for strategic export licences as a business-critical operation for the Department for International Trade and…