Guidance

Trade sanctions on Syria

Syria is subject to restrictions on internal repression items, a transit control and other restrictions.

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There are number of restrictive measures imposed against Syria. These measures are imposed and implemented by the European Union through the Council Decision 2013/255/CFSP and Council Regulation (EU) No 36/2012. There are also further UK controls on internal repression items in the Export Control (Syria Sanctions) Order 2013.

It is prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer chemical and biological weapons-related equipment which might be used for internal repression as listed in Annex IA of Council Regulation 36/2012 to Syria, or to other destinations where they are ultimately for use in Syria.

An authorisation is also required to export, sell, supply or transfer equipment listed in Annex IX to Syria, or to other destinations where they are ultimately for use in Syria. You should also be aware there are prohibitions if you are providing related technical assistance, financing and financial assistance, and brokering services.

Other equipment which might be used for internal repression

It is prohibited to export, supply or transfer goods or technology which might be used for internal repression, as listed in Schedule 2 of the Export Control (Syria Sanctions) Order 2013 to Syria, or to other destinations where they are ultimately for use in Syria. You should also be aware there are prohibitions if you are providing related brokering services.

Equipment which might be used for monitoring and interception

It is prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer goods and technology intended primarily for use in the monitoring or interception of internet or telephone communications to Syria, or to other destinations where they are ultimately for use in Syria. You should also be aware there are prohibitions if you are providing related technical assistance, financing and financial assistance, and brokering services. It is also prohibited to provide telecommunication or internet monitoring services to or for the benefit of Syria’s government.

Luxury goods

It is prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer luxury goods listed in Annex X of Council Regulation (EU) No 509/2012 to Syria, or to other destinations where they are ultimately for use in Syria.

Gold, precious metals and diamonds

It is prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer gold, precious metals and diamonds to the Syrian Government or related bodies. You should also be aware there are prohibitions if you are providing related technical assistance, financing and financial assistance, and brokering services to the Syrian Government or related bodies. It is also prohibited to import, purchase or transport the above items from the Syrian Government or related bodies, whether or not they originate in Syria.

Crude oil and petroleum products

It is prohibited to import, purchase or transport crude oil or petroleum products if they are located in Syria, originate in Syria, or have been exported from Syria. You should also be aware there are prohibitions if you are providing related financing and financial assistance.

Jet fuel

It is prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer jet fuel and fuel additives to Syria, or to other destinations where they are ultimately for use in Syria. You should also be aware there are prohibitions if you are providing related brokering services and financing and financial assistance.

Banknotes and coinage

It is prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer newly printed or unissued Syrian denominated banknotes and minted coinage to or for the benefit of Syria’s central bank.

Cultural goods

It is prohibited to import, export, transfer, or provide brokering services in relation to Syrian cultural property and other items of archaeological, historical, cultural, rare scientific or religious importance, including those listed in Annex XI of Council Regulation (EU) No 36/2012, if they have been illegally removed in breach of Syrian law or international law.

Energy sanctions

It is prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer goods for the oil and gas industry in Syria, as specified in Annex VI of Council Regulation (EU) No 36/2012 to Syria, or to other destinations where they are ultimately for use in Syria. You should also be aware there are prohibitions if you are providing related technical assistance, brokering services, and financing and financial assistance.

It is also prohibited to export, sell, supply or transfer goods listed in Annex VII to be used in the construction or installation of new power plants for electricity production. It is also prohibited to provide technical and financial assistance related to these projects.

It is also prohibited to grant any loan or credit to, acquire or extend participation in, or create a joint venture with any Syrian person, entity, or body engaged in the exploration, production or refining of crude oil or the construction or installation of new power plants for electricity production.

Exceptions

Exceptions and licences may be available regarding the above measures. These are set out in Council Decision 2013/255/CFSP and Council Regulation 36/2012.

Transit control

Military items transiting the UK are still regarded as being exported when they leave the country and are therefore subject to control. Article 17 of the Export Control Order 2008 includes a transit and transhipment exception meaning that in many situations a licence is not required. This exception does not apply to goods destined for Syria, meaning that a licence is required to transit goods through the UK or to tranship them in the UK with a view to re-exportation to Syria.

Import restrictions

Contact the Import Licensing Branch for guidance on import licensing.

Financial sanctions

For information on any relevant financial sanctions, contact the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation.

Apply for an export licence through the online export licensing system managed by the Export Control Joint Unit (ECJU).

ECJU contact details

Helpline

Contact the helpline for general queries about strategic export licensing.

Export Control Joint Unit
2nd floor 
3 Whitehall Place
London
SW1A 2AW

Email: exportcontrol.help@trade.gov.uk

Telephone: 020 7215 4594

Notices to exporters

Notices to exporters from the ECJU contain important information about:

  • amendments to open general export licences
  • changes to the list of controlled goods
  • updates on legislation and sanctions

Sign up to receive email alerts to notices to exporters.

Published 13 August 2012
Last updated 28 January 2015 + show all updates
  1. Updated with links to latest information on sanctions.
  2. Included links to financial sanctions content on GOV.UK
  3. Changed GOV.UK URLs to internal links. Added link to new Notices to Exporters blog.
  4. First published.