European Union: Export Controls And Sanctions Update – May 2016

Last Updated: 13 June 2016
Article by Laurent Ruessmann and Jochen Beck

Further to our January update, this alert sets out the export control and sanctions updates for the months February to May 2016.


The European Union ("EU") has updated various sanctions regimes, including those against Al Qaida, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Central African Republic, Egypt, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Russia, Syria and Tunisia.

1.1 Al Qaida

In order to further implement the Decisions adopted by the United Nations ("UN") Security Council between the months of October and December 2015, Regulation 2016/13 amended the entries of twelve individuals (Nashwan Abd Al-Razzaq Abd Al-Baqi, Mohammad Tahir Hammid, Ata Abdoulaziz Rashid, Farhad Kanabi Ahmad, Ibrahim Mohamed Khalil, Najmuddin Faraj Ahmad, Akram Turki Hishan Al-Mazidih, Ghazy Fezza Hishan Al-Mazidih, Muthanna Harith Al-Dari, Ibrahim Awwad Ibrahim Ali Al-Badri Al-Samarrai, Abu Mohammed Al-Jawlani and Tarkhan Ismailovich Gaziev) and deleted the entry of one person from that list (Rafik Mohamad Yousef).

Additionally, Regulation 2016/294 amended the entries of six persons affected by the freezing of funds and economic resources imposed by Regulation 881/2002: Salah Eddine Gasmi, Mohamed Ben Belgacem Ben Abdallah Al-Aouadi, Al-Azhar Ben Khalifa Ben Ahmed Rouine, Mourad Ben Ali Ben Al-Basheer Al-Trabelsi, Imad Ben Bechir Ben Hamda Al-Jammali and Habib Ben Ahmed Al-Loubiri.

Regulation 2016/307 added one entry under the heading "Legal persons, groups and entities" (Harakat Sham Al-Islam) as well as eleven natural persons (Abd Al-Baset Azzouz, Gulmurod Khalimov, Nusret Imamovic, Muhannad Al-Najdi, Morad Laaboudi, Ali Musa Al-Shawakh, Hasan Al-Salahayn Salih Al-Sha'ari, Mounir Ben Dhaou Ben Brahim Ben Helal, Mohammed Abdel-Halim Hemaida Saleh, Salim Benghalem and Abu Ubaydah Yusuf Al-Anabi).

On 14 March 2016, Regulation 2016/363 and Decision 2016/368 were adopted. As a result of this, and in order to comply with the Resolution 2253 (2015) adopted by the UN Security Council, the existing restrictive measures against Al Qaida are now also applicable against members of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL, also known as Da'esh).

Furthermore, on 31 March 2016, Regulation 2016/473 added Nayef Salam Muhammad Ujaym Al-Hababi to the list of persons to whom the freezing of funds and economic resources should apply.

Lastly, on 25 April 2016, Regulation 2016/647 added the entries of the following persons to the list of persons affected by restrictive measures: Turki Mubarak Abdullah Ahmad Al-Binali, Faysal Ahmad Bin Ali Al-Zahrani, Tuah Febriwansyah, Husayn Juaythini and Muhammad Sholeh Ibrahim.

1.2 Bosnia and Herzegovina

On 31 March, Decision 2016/477 amended the period of validity of Decision 2011/173 by extending it until 31 March 2017.

1.3 Central African Republic

Amendments with regard to the sanctions program against the Central African Republic were introduced on 11 March 2016 by Regulation 2016/354 and Decision 2016/360. As a result of this, one person (Joseph Kony) and one entity (Lord's Resistance Army) were added to the lists of persons and entities affected by the restrictive measures.

Moreover, on 11 April 2016, Regulation 2016/555 and Decision 2016/564 amended the designation criteria for the asset freeze and the travel prohibitions as well as the exemptions to the arms embargo.

1.4 Egypt

On 18 March 2016, Decision 2016/411 amended Decision 2011/172, which put in place restrictive measures directed against certain persons, entities and bodies identified as responsible for the misappropriation of Egyptian State funds, by extending its period of validity until 22 March 2017.

1.5 Iran

On 11 April 2016, Regulation 2016/556 and Decision 2016/565 deleted Hossein Hamedani and Malek Ajdar Sharifi from the list of natural persons subject to restrictive measures. Furthermore, the entries for the following persons were amended: Esmail Ahmadi–Moqaddam, Hossein Allahkaram, Ali Fazli, Bahram Hosseini Motlagh, Ahmad-Reza Radan, Seyeed Hassan Shariati, Hassan Haddad, Hodjatoleslam Seyed, Mohammad Soltani, Abbas Pir-Abassi, Amir Mortazavi, Malek Adjar Sharifi, Ali-Reza Akbarshahi, Mohammad Reza Habibi, Yadollah Javani, Mehrdad Omidi, Seyyed Morteza Bakhtiari, Heydar Moslehi, Ezzatollah Zarghami, Reza Taghipour, Toraj Kazemi, Seyyed Solat Mortazavi and Ali Fahradi.

On 18 April 2016, Regulation 2016/603 and Decision 2016/609, with effect until 22 October 2016, added Bank Saderat Iran and Bank Saderat PLC London to the list of persons and entities involved in nuclear or ballistic missile activities and persons and entities providing support to the Government of Iran.

1.6 Libya

Regulation 2016/44 repealed and reconsolidated Regulation 204/2011 and its subsequent amendments in a similar manner as Decision 2015/1333 did with Decision 2011/137.

The new version of the Regulation foresees substantial amendments to the lists of persons and entities affected by the restrictive measures. In that regard, there are new entries for thirteen persons (Abdelhafiz Zlitni, Bashir Saleh Bashir Alshargawi, Mohamed Abou El-Kassim Zouai, Baghdadi Al-Mahmoudi, Mohamad Mahmoud Hijazi, Mohamad Ali Houej, Abdelmajid Al-Gaoud, Ibrahim Zarroug Al-Charif, Abdelkebir Mohamad Fakhiri, Abdallah Mansour, Colonel Taher Juwadi, Quren Salih Quren Al Qadhafi and Colonel Amid Husain Al Kuni) and sixteen entities (Libyan Arab African Investment Company, Gaddafi International Charity and Development Foundation, Waatassimou Foundation, Libyan Jamahirya Broadcasting Corporation, Revolutionary Guard Corps, Libyan Agricultural Bank, Al-Inma Holding Co. for Services Investments, Al-Inma Holding Co. for Industrial Investments, Al-Inma Holding Company for Tourism Investment, Al-Inma Holding Co. for Construction and Real Estate Developments, LAP Green Networks, Sabtina Ltd, Ashton Global Investments Limited, Capitana Seas Limited, Kinloss Property Limited and Baroque Investments Limited).

In addition, on 31 March 2016, Regulation 2016/466 and Decision 2016/478 amended Regulation 2016/44 and Decision 2015/1333 respectively by adding the names of Agila Saleh Issa Gwaider, Khalifa Ghwell and Nuri Abu Sahmain to the list of persons subject to restrictive measures in view of the situation in Libya.

On 4 May 2016, Regulation 2016/690 added an entry for Distya Ameya to the list of vessels subject to restrictive measures and it also updated the entries of two persons: Mutassim Qadhafi and Safia Farkash Al-Barassi. In addition to this, Decision 2016/694 amended the entry of another individual subject to restrictive measures in view of the situation in Libya: Sayyid Mohammed Qadhaf Al-Dam.

With Regulation 2016/819 and Decision 2016/816 the recently added entry of Distya Ameya was deleted from the list of vessels subject to restrictive measures.

1.7 Myanmar/Burma

On 21 April 2016, Decision 2016/627 extended the period of validity of Decision 2013/184, which had reduced substantially the restrictive measures in place to the arms embargo and the embargo on equipment which might be used for internal repression, until 30 April 2017.

1.8 North Korea

Parties' listings

On 4 March 2016, Regulation 2016/315 and Decision 2016/319 amended Regulation 329/2007 and Decision 2013/183 respectively.

Fifteen persons (Choe Chun Sik, Choe Song Il, Hyon Kwang II, Jang Bom Su, Jang Yong Son, Jon Myong Guk, Kang Mun Kil, Kang Ryong, Kim Jung Jong, Kim Kyu, Kim Tong My'ong, Kim Yong Chol, Ko Tae Hun, Ri Man Gon and Ryu Jin and Yu Chol U) were added to the lists of sanctioned parties and the existing entry of Ra Ky'ong-Su was amended.

Also, eleven entities (Academy of National Defence Science, Chongchongang Shipping Company, Daedong Credit Bank, Hesong Trading Company, Korea Kwangson Banking Corporation, Korea Kwangsong Trading Corporation, Ministry of Atomic Energy Industry, Munitions Industry Department, National Aerospace Development Administration, Office 39, Reconnaissance General Bureau and Second Economic Committee) were added to the lists and the entries of Namchongang Trading Corporation and Ocean Maritime Management Company Limited were replaced by new ones.

At the same time, the following natural and legal persons were deleted from the lists: Kim Tong-Myo'ng, Second Economic Committee, Hesong Trading Corporation, Korea Kwangson Trading Corporation, Munitions Industry Department, Reconnaissance General Bureau, Korea Kwangson Banking Corporation and Office 39 of the Korean Workers' Party.

On 31 March 2016, Regulation 2016/465 and Decision 2016/475 listed the Korea National Insurance Corporation (KNIC) and provided for derogations to allow EU persons and entities to obtain insurance from KNIC for activities to be carried out in North Korea. The Council also decided that EU persons or entities should be allowed to receive payments by KNIC derived from such insurance or in respect of damage caused within the territory of the Union. In addition, Decision 2016/475 allows the unfreezing of KNIC's funds needed for payments due under a prior contract.

On 12 April 2016, Regulation 2016/569 amended the information contained in the entry of Ocean Maritime Management Company Limited, and Decision 2016/573 deleted from the list of entities subject to the freezing of funds the entries of four vessels with the following International Maritime Organization ("IMO") numbers: JH 86 8602531, Jin Tal 9163154, Jin Teng 9163166 and Grand Karo 8511823.

On 27 April 2016, Regulation 2016/659 amended the entries of five natural persons (Il-Su Kim, Song-Sam Kam, Chun-Sik Soe, Kyu-Nam Sin, Chun-San Pak and Tong Myong So), added an entry for one legal person (Korea National Insurance Corporation and its branch offices) and deleted one entry from that same list (Korea National Insurance Company GmbH).

In addition, on 19 May 2016, Regulation 2016/780 and Decision 2016/785 added to the list of sanctioned parties one legal person (Strategic Rocket Forces) and seventeen natural persons (Kyong-song Choe, Yong-ho Choe, Sung Mu Hong, Chun Ryong Jo, Kyongchol Jo, Chun sam Kim, Chun sop Kim, Jong gak Kim, Rak Kyom Kim, Won hong Kim, Jong chon Pak, Jong su Ri, Chol ju Son, Jong rin Yun, Yong sikn Pak, Yong Chil Hong, Hak Chol Ri and Chang Hyok Yun) in the lists of natural and legal persons subject to sanctions in view of the situation in North Korea. Moreover, the entries of Kyu Chang Chu and Se bong Paek were also amended.

Substantial extension of scope

On 31 March 2016, Decision 2016/476 expanded the restrictive measures against North Korea in relation to the freezing of economic funds and the prohibitions to export weapons, provide aircraft and sale or supply aviation fuel among others.

On 29 April 2016 and 27 May 2016, Regulation 2016/682 and Regulation 2016/841 substantially extended the scope of Regulation 329/2007 in response to North Korea's recent nuclear tests and political escalations:

Article 2 was modified to include new prohibitions: (i) to sell, supply, export or transfer aviation fuel as listed in Annex Ie to North Korea or transport to North Korea aviation fuel on board the flag vessels or aircraft of Member States, whether or not originating in the territories of Member States; and (ii) to purchase, import or transfer or transport on board the flag vessels or aircraft of a Member State gold, titanium ore, vanadium ore and rare earth minerals as listed in Annex Ic or coal, iron and iron ore as listed in Annex Id, from North Korea.

Article 2a was newly inserted and contains a prohibition to sell, supply, transfer or export, directly or indirectly, to North Korea any item, except food or medicine, if the exporter knows or has reasonable grounds to believe that the item is destined directly or indirectly for North Korea's armed forces or the export of the item could support or enhance the operational capabilities of the armed forces of a State other than North Korea.

Article 5a second paragraph now prohibits operating or facilitating the operation of a representative office, branch or subsidiary of a credit or financial institution domiciled in North Korea or of any credit or financial institution referred to in Article 11a(2).

Article 5b contains new prohibitions: (i) to accept or approve investment in any commercial activity where such investment is made by (a) persons, entities or bodies of the Government of North Korea; (b) the Workers Party of Korea; (c) nationals of North Korea; (d) legal entities or bodies incorporated or constituted under the law of North Korea; (e) persons, entities or bodies acting on their behalf or at their direction; and (f) legal persons, entities or bodies owned or controlled by them; (ii) to establish a joint venture with or take or extend an ownership interest, including by acquisition in full or the acquisition of shares and other securities of a participatory nature, in any legal person, entity or body referred to in points (a) to (f) of paragraph 1 of Article 5b engaged in North Korea's nuclear related, ballistic-missile-related or other weapons-of-mass-destruction-related activities or programs, or in activities in the sectors of mining, refining and chemical industries; (iii) to grant financing or financial assistance to any legal person, entity or body referred to in points (d) to (f) of paragraph 1 of Article 5b or for the documented purpose of financing such legal persons, entities or bodies; and (iv) to provide investment services directly related to the activities referred to in points (a) and (b) of the second paragraph of Article 5b.

Article 5c introduces two new prohibitions: (i) the transfer of funds to and from North Korea; and (ii) the entering into or continuation to participate by credit and financial institutions in any transactions with (a) credit and financial institutions domiciled in North Korea; (b) branches or subsidiaries falling within the scope of Article 16 of credit and financial institutions domiciled in North Korea, as listed in Annex VI; (c) branches or subsidiaries falling outside the scope of Article 16 of credit and financial institutions domiciled in North Korea, as listed in Annex VI; and (d) credit and financial institutions that are neither domiciled in North Korea, nor fall within the scope of Article 16, but are controlled by persons, entities or bodies domiciled in North Korea, as listed in Annex VI.

Article 6 includes a new prohibition of the provision of funds or economic resources to persons, entities or bodies of the Government of North Korea, the Worker's Party of Korea, persons or entities acting on their behalf or at their direction, or entities owned or controlled by them, where it has been determined that such persons, entities or bodies are associated with North Korea's nuclear or ballistic missile programs or other activities prohibited by UN Security Council Resolutions 1718 (2006), 1874 (2009), 2087 (2013), 2094 (2013) or 2270 (2016).

Article 6a prohibits the participation directly or indirectly in joint ventures or any other business arrangements with entities listed in Annex IV, as well as individuals or entities acting for or on their behalf or direction.

Article 9c prohibits the provision of financial support to trade with North Korea, including the granting of export credits, guarantees or insurance to persons or entities involved in such trade where such financial support could contribute to North Korea's nuclear or ballistic missile programmes or other activities prohibited by UN Security Council Resolutions 1718 (2006), 1874 (2009), 2087 (2013), 2094 (2013) or 2270 (2016).

Article 11b includes three new prohibitions: (i) to lease or charter vessels or aircraft or provide crew services to North Korea, persons or entities listed in Annex IV, any other North Korean entities, any other persons or entities which have assisted in violating the provisions of UN Security Council Resolutions 1718 (2006), 1874 (2009), 2087 (2013), 2094 (2013) or 2270 (2016), or any person or entity acting on behalf of, or at the direction of, any such person or entity, and entities owned or controlled by them; (ii) to own, lease, operate, insure or provide vessel classification services or associated services, to any vessel flagged to North Korea; and (iii) to register or maintain on the register, any vessel that is owned, operated or crewed by North Korea or North Korean nationals, or has been de-registered by another State pursuant to paragraph 19 of UN Security Council Resolution 2270 (2016).

Article 13a prohibits knowingly and intentionally participating in activities the object or effect of which is to circumvent the prohibitions contained in Regulation 2016/682.

1.9 Russia

March brought the enactment of several norms in relation to actions said to undermine or threaten the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine and the situation in that country.

The main result was the extension until September 2016 of the current sanctions targeting individual Russian and pro-Russian separatists, as well as companies deemed to support the destabilization of the eastern part of Ukraine. Moreover, the lists of persons and entities subject to those sanctions were enlarged and amended as explained in the paragraphs below.

On 4 March 2016, Regulation 2016/311 and Decision 2016/318 added a new entry for Raisa Vasylivna Bohatyriova and updated the existing ones for Vitalii Yuriyovych Zakharchenk, Olena Leonidivna Lukash and Dmytro Volodymyrovych Tabachnyk.

Furthermore, on 10 March 2016, Regulation 2016/353 and Decision 2016/359 deleted the entries of Yuriy Gennadyevich Zherebtsov, Igor Dmitrievich Sergun and Pavel Dremov.

Also, the entries of the following persons and entities were amended/modified: Sergey Valeryevich Aksyonov, Vladimir Andreevich, Rustam Ilmirovich Temirgaliev, Aleksei Mikhailovich Chaliy, Pyotr Anatoliyovych Zima, Sergey Pavlovych Tsekov, Ozerov, Viktor Alekseevich, Andrei Aleksandrovich Klishas, Aleksandr Borisovich Totoonov, Oleg Evgenevich Panteleev, Aleksandr Viktorovich Vitko, Elena Borisovna Mizulina, Oleg Genrikhovich Savelyev, Andriy Yevgenovych Purgin, Denys Volodymyrovych Pushylin, Sergey Gennadevich Tsyplakov, Igor Vsevolodovich Girkin, Oleg Grigorievich Kozyura, Viacheslav Ponomariov, Oleg Tsariov, Aleksandr Yurevich Borodai, Alexandr Aleksandrovich Kalyussky, Alexander Khryakov, Nikolay Kozitsyn, Alexander Nikolayevich Tkachyov, Ekaterina Iurievna Gubareva, Miroslav Vladimirovich Rudenko, Gennadiy Nikolaiovych Tsypkalov, Andrey Yurevich Pinchuk, Andrei Nikolaevich Rodkin, Mikhail Sergeyevich Sheremet, Svetlana Sergeevna Zhurova, Serhiy Kozyakov, Oleg Konstantinovich Akimov, Dmitry Aleksandrovich Semyonov, Oleg Bugrov, Alexey Yurevich Milchakov, Arseny Sergeevich Pavlov, Eduard Aleksandrovich Basurin, Alexandr Vasilievich Shubin, Sergey Yurevich Ignatov, Ekaterina Filippova, Evgeny Vladimirovich Manuilov, Olga Besedina, Arkady Viktorovich Bakhin, Andrei Valeryevich Kartapolov, Chernomorneftegaz, Port Feodosia, Donbass People's Militia, Sevastopol seaport, Kerch seaport, Universal-Avia, Sanatorium Nizhnyaya Oreanda, Massandra, National Institute of Wine Magarach, Novy Svet and Russian National Commercial Bank.

1.10 Syria

On 27 May 2016, Regulation 2016/840 and Decision 2016/850 deleted the entries of two natural persons from the list of persons subject to restrictive measures in view of the situation in Syria: Mohamed Farahat and Muhammad Nasif. In addition to this, the entries of the following natural persons were amended: Rami Makhlouf, Mohamed Hamcho, Ihab Makhlouf, Khalid Qaddur, Ra'if Al-Quwatly, Mohammed Makhlouf, Ayman Jabir, Ali Douba, Samir Hassan, Mohanmmad Al-Jleilati, Joseph Suwaid, Hussein Mahmoud Farzat, Emad Abdul-Ghani Sabouni, Adnan Hassan Mahmoud, Hashim Anwar al-Aqqad, Wael Abdulkarim and George Haswani.

1.11 Terrorism

On 21 April 2016, Regulation 2016/620 and Decision 2016/628 deleted the entry of International Sikh Youth Federation from the list of entities targeted by specific restrictive measures with a view to combating terrorism.

1.12 Tunisia

Regulation 2016/111 and Decision 2016/119 amended the list of natural and legal persons subject to restrictive measures in view of the situation in Tunisia. Moreover, Decision 2016/119 extended the application of the sanctions currently in force until 31 January 2017.


In April the latest version of the EU Common Military List was published. In addition, the UK updated several Open General Export Licences ("OGEL") in the last months and introduced a new Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation.

2.1 The EU Common Military List has been updated

On 6 April 2016, the latest version of the EU Common Military List was published. It adds BTNEN (Bis(2,2,2-trinitroethyl)-nitramine) (CAS 19836-28-3) under the heading ML8 – Energetic materials, and related substance. Moreover, the 2016 ML contains new definitions for "airship", "microprogramme" and "programme". The updated version of the EU Common Military List can be accessed here.

2.2 Amendments to the UK Open General Export Licence

The Export Control Organisation ("ECO") has amended several OGELS since the beginning of 2016 to reflect changes to the EU dual-use list. See here for further information.

Moreover, on 4 March 2016, OGEL: International Non-Proliferation Regime Decontrols: Dual-Use Items was amended in order to list those items that have been reviewed by the International Non-Proliferation Regimes and for which de-control has been recommended, to take into account the fact that the respective updates to the EU dual-use list are not expected before the end of 2016. The updates also put in place new requirements for an authorisation to be granted, for instance, the completion of a so-called "pre-visit questionnaire" prior to ECO's audit. Furthermore, Syria and Russia are now included in Annex 2 together with the rest of countries for which OGELs are not valid. Further information on these developments is available here.

2.3 Creation of the UK Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation

On 31 March 2016, Her Majesty's Treasury ("HM Treasury") announced the launch of the Office of Financial Sanctions Implementation ("OFSI").

OFSI's main responsibility will be to ensure that breaches of financial sanctions are promptly detected and effectively addressed, and to speed up the implementation of UN financial sanctions. Thus, where a UN resolution imposing financial sanctions has been passed but an EU legal act aimed at implementing that resolution has not yet been adopted, OFSI may adopt temporary measures giving effect to those financial sanctions until the relevant EU legal act enters into force.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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