Executive Order 13129 (pdf file) of July 4, 1999, blocks the property of and prohibits most trade with the Taliban or involving the territory of Afghanistan controlled by the Taliban. On January 24, 2002, pursuant to section 4(d) of the Order, the US Government issued a notice (pdf file), published in the Federal Register on January 29, 2002, modifying the description of "territory of Afghanistan controlled by the Taliban." As of that date, it was determined that the Taliban controlled no territory within Afghanistan.
This determination means that the comprehensive controls formerly maintained on exports from the US and by US persons to the territory of Afghanistan controlled by the Taliban are no longer in effect. Afghanistan is thus returned to its pre-July 4, 1999, export control status. US exporters may resume dual-use exports and reexports to Afghanistan under authorities as specified in the Export Administration Regulations.
Many infrastructure and humanitarian items that might be exported to Afghanistan from the U.S. as part of U.S. assistance announced by the White House in January 2002 do not require a license, based on the existing regulatory requirements. Please note that some commodities, software, and technology on the Commerce Control List may require a license. These include items controlled for Chemical and Biological Weapons, Nuclear Nonproliferation, National Security, and Missile Technology reasons. There are also foreign policy controls in place for Regional Stability and Crime Control reasons.
Please note that a license is required to export an item subject to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR), even when one would not otherwise be necessary, if you know, have reason to know, or are otherwise individually informed by the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) with respect to a specific transaction that the item will be used in activities related to nuclear, chemical or biological weapons or missile delivery systems as defined in part 744 of the EAR. The Know Your Customer guidance in Supplement 3 to part 732 of the EAR is provided to explain the "knowledge" standard that applies to these license requirements. In addition, prior to any export, we recommend that you review the ten prohibitions outlined in part 736 of the EAR as part of your overall review of export requirements.
Please also note that, despite the fact that the Taliban no longer controls territory in Afghanistan, the US embargo on the Taliban remains in effect and applies to the Taliban, and associated blocked persons or entities, wherever located.
For more information on the constantly-changing list of individuals and entities covered by this sanction, exporters are strongly urged to consult with the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) and their list of Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons ("SDN List"). As an example, on January 15, 2002, the United Nations removed restrictions on Ariana Afghan Airlines. OFAC removed this and a number of other entities from the SDN List on February 12, 2002. Exporters should also consult the overview of the Taliban Sanctions Regulations which are also available on OFAC's Web page.
If you have specific inquiries regarding exports or reexports to Afghanistan, please contact the BIS Export Counseling Division at 202-482-4811 or submit a query.