Vol. 147, No. 1 — January 2, 2013
SOR/2012-287 December 14, 2012
EXPORT AND IMPORT PERMITS ACT
Order Amending the Automatic Firearms Country Control List
P.C. 2012-1716 December 13, 2012
His Excellency the Governor General in Council, on the recommendation of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, pursuant to sections 4.1 (see footnote a) and 6 (see footnote b) of the Export and Import Permits Act (see footnote c), makes the annexed Order Amending the Automatic Firearms Country Control List.
ORDER AMENDING THE AUTOMATIC FIREARMS COUNTRY CONTROL LIST
1. The Automatic Firearms Country Control List (see footnote 1) is amended by adding the following in alphabetical order:
Republic of Colombia
COMING INTO FORCE
2. This Order comes into force on the day on which it is registered.
(This statement is not part of the Order.)
The Export and Import Permits Act (EIPA) requires that a person obtain an export permit, issued by Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada (DFAIT), should they wish to export, from Canada, an item which is included in the Export Control List (ECL), prior to shipment. Applications to export goods or technology listed on the ECL are reviewed on a case-by-case basis to ensure that the proposed export is consistent with Canada’s foreign and defence policies. Subsection 4.1 of the EIPA further establishes that only those countries that have concluded an intergovernmental defence, research, development and production arrangement with Canada are eligible to be included on the Automatic Firearms Country Control List (AFCCL).
The EIPA places very strict controls on the export of prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons and prohibited devices (as defined in the Criminal Code of Canada), examples of which include fully automatic firearms, electric stun guns and large-capacity magazines. In order to export such items, an exporter must obtain an export permit, and applications to export these items are only considered for countries on the AFCCL. There are currently 33 countries listed on the AFCCL, consisting of all 27 North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) member countries, Australia, Botswana, Finland, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, and Sweden.
The amendment seeks to expand the AFCCL to include Colombia.
- Open potential new market opportunities for Canadian exporters by allowing them to apply for export permits for the export of prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons and prohibited devices to Colombia.
- Promote transparency regarding the potential export of prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons and prohibited devices.
The amendment to the AFCCL will formally add Colombia to the list of countries that the Governor in Council deems appropriate to export prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons and prohibited devices and to which the Minister of Foreign Affairs may issue an export permit for such items. The inclusion of Colombia on the AFCCL does not guarantee that a permit will be issued for the export of these items and all applications will remain subject to the Government of Canada’s case-by-case review process.
As is customary when dealing with potential changes to Canada’s export control regime, consultations on the amendment have been held within DFAIT and with other government departments, specifically the Department of National Defence and the Department of Justice. Consulted parties have determined that Colombia is an acceptable destination for inclusion on the AFCCL.
Public web-based consultations regarding the possible addition of Colombia were held in October 2012 by DFAIT. Three respondents provided submissions to DFAIT on this issue, with one respondent being supportive of Colombia’s inclusion and two respondents objecting to it. Respondents objecting to Colombia’s inclusion on the AFCCL cited concerns relating to the long-time armed conflict and human rights issues within Colombia as the reasons for their objection.
All comments were taken into consideration. DFAIT’s responses to those comments objecting to Colombia’s inclusion on the AFCCL are discussed below:
Concerns related to human rights and the armed conflict
Colombia should not be added to the AFCCL due to concerns relating to human rights and the long-time armed conflict within that country.
An inter/intra-departmental consultation process was conducted regarding the appropriateness of including Colombia on the AFCCL. This consultation process included a review of multiple issues, including a review of potential human rights and existing conflicts issues. The consultation process concluded with the Government of Canada determining that Colombia was an appropriate destination for inclusion on the AFCCL.
As stated previously, the addition of a country to the AFCCL does not guarantee that an export permit will be issued. All applications are reviewed on a case-by-case basis, including a review of any human right concerns.
The EIPA forbids exports from Canada of prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons, and prohibited devices to any destination not listed on the AFCCL. Adding Colombia to the AFCCL allows residents of Canada, as defined under the EIPA, to submit export permit applications for the export of such items to Colombia.
Colombia’s addition to the AFCCL opens new market opportunities by providing residents of Canada with the opportunity to explore and compete for contracts in Colombia for items controlled under the AFCCL.
Moreover, the amendment is consistent with the aim of the AFCCL to promote transparency in the export and transfer of prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons and prohibited devices by making public that Canada will now consider export permit applications for the export of those items to Colombia. Every export permit application will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis, taking into account Canada’s defence and foreign policies.
The administrative burden to apply for an export permit for prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons, and prohibited devices is the same as the one currently in place for other items controlled under the EIPA. The amendment does not decrease the administrative burden already in place for the export of prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons, and prohibited devices to countries listed on the AFCCL. The addition of Colombia to the AFCCL has no impact on other areas or sectors.
7. Implementation, enforcement and service standards
All items listed on the ECL, including the prohibited firearms, prohibited weapons and prohibited devices to which the AFCCL refers, are subject to export permit requirements, unless otherwise stated. Failure to comply with the EIPA, or its related regulatory or other requirements, may lead to prosecution. The Canada Border Services Agency and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police are responsible for the enforcement of export controls.
Export Controls Division (TIE)
Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada
125 Sussex Drive
S.C. 1995, c. 39, s. 171
S.C. 1991, c. 28, s. 3
R.S., c. E-19