Friday, September 21, 2007

Treaty Transmittal: Treaty with United Kingdom Concerning Defense Trade Cooperation

Yesterday, the President transmitted to the Senate, for its advice and consent to ratification, the Treaty with United Kingdom Concerning Defense Trade Cooperation. The transmittal package (Treaty Doc. 110-7) is available here. The treaty was signed by President Bush and then-Prime Minister Blair on June 21, 2007. A State Department fact sheet lists the following "key elements" of the treaty:

The Defense Trade Cooperation Treaty will permit the export of certain U.S. defense articles and services to the U.K. Government and select British companies that meet specific requirements, without U.S. export licenses or other prior approvals. It also ensures the continuation of the British policy of not requiring a license for the export of U.K. defense articles and services to the United States.

The Treaty will create an approved community of the two governments and selected defense companies. Most U.S. defense articles will be eligible to be exported into and within this community without prior U.S. Government licenses or other authorizations as long as the exports are in support of:

  • Combined U.S.-U.K. military or counterterrorism operations.
  • Joint U.S.-U.K. cooperative security and defense research, development,
    production, and support programs.
  • Specific security and defense projects that are for U.K. Government use
  • U.S. Government end-use.

The State Department's Directorate of Defense Trade Controls reviewed more than 70,000 cases in 2006. By removing the need to review licenses for exports to the United Kingdom in support of joint operations and U.K. Ministry of Defense programs, this treaty will allow the Directorate of Defense Trade Controls to redirect some of its resources elsewhere.

The Strategic Security Blog provides background here. On September 5th, the United States also signed a Defense Trade Cooperation Treaty with Australia. The State Department fact sheet is here.