U.S. aerospace trade with China is growing, with annual sales now exceeding $2 billion. But exporters must pay close attention to the end-uses of their products to determine whether a license is needed.
Last year, the Commerce Department announced a new license, the GLX, that decontrolled many exports to China, including high-speed computers, telecommunications equipment and electronics. The GLX cannot be used for exports to military buyers, however, or to help build nuclear-capable missiles or space rockets.
China appears on the Commerce watch list known as “Supplement 6” (Part 778 of the Export Administration Regulations). The list names countries and projects of concern for missile proliferation. If a company knows its products “will be used in the design, development, production or use of missiles” in China, it must apply for a license. The law defines “missiles” as all rocket systems, ballistic missiles, space launch vehicles, sounding rockets, cruise missiles and drones capable of delivering at least 500 kilograms payload to a range of at least 300 kilometers.
The payload and range limit is set by the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), an effort by 25 countries to curb missile sales to countries of proliferation concern. China has not joined the Regime, so most space rocket or missile-related exports to China require a license.
Chinese companies sanctioned in 1993-94 for missile sales to Pakistan:
– Chinese Ministry of Aerospace Industry
– China Precision Machinery Import/Export Corp.
– China National Space Administration
– China Aerospace Corporation
– China Great Wall Industry Corporation
– Chinese Academy of Space Technology
– Beijing Wan Yuan Industry Corporation
– China Haiying Company
– Shanghai Astronautics Industry Bureau
– China Chang Feng Group