Through both the 2019 National Defense Authorization Act and 2018 Export Control Reform Act, Congress authorized Commerce to establish appropriate controls on the export, re-export or transfer (in country) of emerging and so-called “foundational” technologies.
“Commerce, through an interagency process, seeks to determine whether there are specific emerging technologies that are important to the national security of the United States for which effective controls can be implemented that avoid negatively impacting U.S. leadership in the science, technology, engineering and manufacturing sectors,” BIS said in a Federal Register advance notice of proposed rulemaking on Monday.
Specifically, the agency is most interested in those new technologies that have potential to fuel foreign weapons manufacturing, intelligence gathering and terrorist activities to the detriment of the U.S. These new technologies may not be currently listed on the Commerce Control List (CCL), which require specific licensing oversight before being exported abroad.
BIS said these potentially national security-sensitive technologies will be determined by an interagency process that will consider both public and classified information, as well as information from the Emerging Technology Technical Advisory Committee and the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. The interagency process is expected to result in proposed rules for new Export Control Classification Numbers (ECCNs) on the CCL.
In its advanced proposed rulemaking, BIS has asked for public comments on:
• How to define emerging technology to assist identification of such technology in the future;
• Criteria to determine whether there are specific technologies within these general categories that are important to U.S. national security;
• Sources to identify these technologies;
• Status of technologies development in the United States and other countries;
• Impact that specific emerging technology controls would have on U.S. technological leadership;
• Any other approaches to identify emerging technologies that are important to U.S. national security, including the stage of development or maturity level of an emerging technology that would warrant consideration for export control.
BIS expects to receive comments for this advanced proposed rulemaking by Dec. 19.