|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE||
BUREAU OF INDUSTRY AND SECURITY
| Tuesday, September 2nd, 2008
Assessment will examine the existence of foreign availability for
uncooled thermal imaging cameras in China
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Department of Commerce's Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) published a notice in the Federal Register today announcing a 90-day study to assess the foreign availability of uncooled thermal imaging cameras in the People's Republic of China (PRC). BIS is required to initiate this assessment in response to a duly certified petition certified by the Sensors and Instrumentation Technical Advisory Committee (SITAC), which asserts that uncooled thermal imaging cameras are widely available in China and render U.S. export controls ineffective in achieving their purpose (View the Report).
Part 768 of the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) sets forth the procedures associated with foreign availability assessments. The Secretary of Commerce has 90 days from the date of initiation to make a determination about uncooled thermal imaging cameras. That determination will state whether those cameras are available in the PRC in sufficient quantity, and of comparable quality, to render current U.S. export controls ineffective. BIS is also soliciting information from the public and other U.S. Government agencies to develop its own recommendation for the Secretary's consideration. Upon completion of his review, the Secretary will notify both the SITAC and Congress of the final determination in this assessment.
If foreign availability exists, the Department may remove the license requirement, unless the President determines that this would be detrimental to national security. Alternatively, the Secretary may recommend to the President that negotiations be undertaken to eliminate the foreign availability.
A foreign availability assessment is an evidentiary analysis that BIS conducts to assess the foreign availability of a given item. Foreign availability assessments are initiated upon receipt of a petition that meets the criteria set forth in Part 768 of the EAR. In developing its recommendation, BIS considers information submitted with the petition, recommendations of the Departments of Defense, State, and other relevant departments and agencies, data gathered through internal research, and when possible, public comments.