Ministarstvo vanjskih i europskih poslova

Dual Use Items

Controls of export of dual-use items and technologies play a key role in the fight against terrorism and the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction as well as against the abuse of such equipment or technologies.

Dual-use items are items, including computer software and technology, which can be used for both civilian and military purposes, and include all goods which can be used for non-explosive purposes and assisting in any other way in the manufacture of nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices.

In the European Union, this subject is regulated by Regulation (EU) 2021/821 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 May 2021 setting up a Union regime for the control of exports, brokering, technical assistance, transit and transfer of dual-use items (recast). 

Regulation (EU) 2021/821 establishes the effective common system of export control of dual-use items to ensure compliance with international obligations and responsibilities of the Member States and the European Union, especially regarding non-proliferation. Such a common control system and harmonized policies for enforcement and monitoring in all Member States is a prerequisite for establishing the free movement of dual-use items within the Union.

As defined in the Regulation (EU) 2021/821, the term “export” shall mean customs procedure arranged by customs regulations for the dual-use items that permanently or temporarily leave the customs territory of the Republic of Croatia and European Union, including a re-export of such items. Export shall also mean a transmission of software or technology by electronic media, including by fax, telephone, electronic mail or any other electronic means to a destination outside the customs territory of the Union; it includes making available in an electronic form such software and technology to legal and natural persons or to partnerships outside the customs territory of the Union. Export also applies to oral transmission of technology when the technology is described over a voice transmission medium.

Before Regulation (EU) 2021/821 came into force on 9 September 2021, there was a Council Regulation (EC) 428/2009 in force as of 27 August 2009. In order to allow direct application of Council Regulation (EC) 428/2009 in the Republic of Croatia, Act on the Control of Dual-Use Items ("Official Gazette", no. 80/2011 and 68/2013) was adopted by the Croatian Parliament.

With the Regulation (EU) 2021/821 in force, Croatian companies are free to transfer almost all dual-use items within the customs territory of the European Union, and without licensing procedure. Licence is only required for dual-use items listed in Annex IV of the Regulation (EU) 2021/821 with regard to the goods of strategic oversight of the Union. Companies can also use the EU General Export Authorisation for the export of certain goods to certain destinations without issuing individual export licence.

The Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs issues licence for the export of dual-use items and the provision of brokering services and technical assistance.

Regulation (EU) 2021/821 prescribes the so called "catch-all" control system, which is not based on the national control list but rather on the end use or end-user of goods. This means an export licence is required for the export of items which are not included in the List, whereas the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs has informed the exporter that the items may be used for production and proliferation of chemical, biological or nuclear weapons. Furthermore, an export licence will be required in cases where the items are destined to a prohibited end-user, i.e. a country that is subject to the UN Security Council sanctions, or to actions imposed by the decisions of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe or the European Union. In such cases, the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs informs the exporter that an export licence must be obtained. Alternatively, if an exporter is aware that dual-use items, which he intends to export, are intended for the use or end-user referred to above, he must notify the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs, which will decide whether an export licence is necessary for such export. New Regulation (EU) 2021/821 particularly emphasis that the export authorisation shall be required for the export of cyber-surveillance items not listed in Annex I if the exporter has been informed by the competent authority that the items in question are or may be intended, in their entirety or in part, for use in connection with internal repression and/or the commission of serious violations of human rights and international humanitarian law.