Implementation of the Foreign Availability Provisions of the Export Administration Act

Gao ID: T-NSIAD-87-8 March 11, 1987

GAO testified on the Department of Commerce's implementation of the foreign availability provisions of the Export Administration Act. GAO found that: (1) in 1985, Commerce issued final regulations on foreign availability procedures and criteria; (2) the 1985 amendments to the act have not reduced the number of products and related technologies subject to export controls, as intended; (3) Commerce is spending more time completing foreign availability assessments due to difficulties in reaching agreement with the Department of Defense (DOD) and in developing the information to assess foreign availability; and (4) few U.S. firms and technical advisory committees have requested foreign availability determinations. GAO noted that: (1) Congress should consider U.S. multilateral control commitments in the foreign availability process; (2) DOD could contribute to the reduction of export controls by implementing the foreign availability provisions; and (3) the administration introduced legislative proposals that could address some of the primary problems now associated with the foreign availability process.

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