Guidance

Exporting in support of UK government defence contracts

Goods in support of UK government defence contracts that require an export licence and use of the Open General Export Licence.

Introduction

The Export Control Organisation, part of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) is the UK regulatory authority responsible for assessing export licences for strategic goods which include military goods and a wide range of so-called dual-use goods (civilian goods with a military purpose).

Goods which require an export licence include those in support of UK Government Defence Contracts.

This guide briefly explains about goods which fall into this category and use of the Open General Export Licence (OGEL) in support of government defence contracts.

Advice on prior OGEL confirmation from the Ministry of Defence (MOD)

Goods which are exported or transferred in support of UK Government Defence Contracts may be eligible for an OGEL.

If goods fall under this category, then they require prior written authorisation from the MOD’s Arms Control and Counter Proliferation (ACP) team.

If the goods are owned privately then exporters will require an export licence. Depending on the nature of the goods this might generally be either an OGEL or Standard Individual Export Licence (SIEL).

Applying to MOD for confirmation to use an OGEL

The Export Control Organisation issues a number of OGELs which cover goods which are subject to export controls.

Further information is available in the guide Open General Licences: an overview.

The list of OGELs includes OGEL (Exports or Transfers in Support of UK Government Defence Contracts). This OGEL might be available for exporters who are supporting a UK defence contract.

For further details see the guide Military Goods Open General Export Licences.

As with using all other OGELs, use of this licence depends on the exporter adhering to the specified terms and conditions detailed within the licence. In the case of this particular OGEL, you need to satisfy certain conditions, including prior written approval from the MOD confirming you are subject to an eligible UK Government Defence Contract.

To confirm eligibility MOD will need the following information:

  • name of the programme involved
  • brief description of the goods concerned
  • contact details of the Commercial Manager in the respective Product Team at Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S)
  • extract of the contract from DE&S confirming your involvement in the programme (a single piece of paper is sufficient, not the whole contract)
  • duration of the contract with DE&S (or the prime contractor if you are a sub-contractor)
  • sub-contractors should ensure that they provide a letter of support from the prime contractor confirming their involvement in the specific programme. The prime contractor will also have to provide the extract of the contract with DE&S to the sub-contractor to confirm the link with DE&S

Once you have obtained the necessary approval, you can apply for an export licence using SPIRE.

As with other OGELs, holders of this licence need to keep accurate records. They are also subject to regular Compliance Audits conducted by the Compliance Team from the ECO. For more details see the guide on compliance and enforcement of Export Controls. If you fail to meet the specified terms and conditions of this OGEL, you can apply for a SIEL. For more details about this type of licence see the guide on Standard Individual Export Licences.

Contact details for the Arms Control and Counter Proliferation (ACP) team within MOD

For further information about the OGEL (Exports or Transfers in Support of UK Government Defence Contracts) as it relates to the responsibilities of the ACP within the MOD, please contact:

Arms Control and Counter Proliferation (ACP) 2nd Floor, Zone D
Ministry of Defence
Main Building
Whitehall
London SW1A 2HB
Telephone: 020 7218 9080
Fax: 020 7807 0428

Further information

MOD Export Policy Helpline

020 7218 9080

BIS ECO Helpline

020 7215 4594

Goods Checker on the Checker Tools website (registration required)

OGEL Checker on the Checker Tools website (registration required)

Subscribe to the Export Control Organisation’s Notices to Exporters

Contact details for the ECO on the BIS website

Published 11 September 2012
Last updated 6 December 2012 + show all updates
  1. Amended broken links and added related guides
  2. First published.