European Convention on Human Rights, the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights or the single state’s fundamental and human rights. But even if the term ‘human rights’ is specified, the inclusion of this catch-all clause would remain highly problematic. Te question remains how and on what basis of which information a firm is meant to judge what behaviour poses a serious violation of human rights. Tis assessment can only be made by a responsible state institution. Te matter of the terrorism catch-all clause is

similar. Although the regulation’s proposal refers to a definition of ‘terrorist act’, it does not make it easier for a company to determine whether a product could possibly be misused for terrorist purposes. Here too, an indication or reference by a state authority is indispensable. Te increased compliance obligation that is

imposed on the exporter is especially alarming. Te legal proposal stipulates that the exporter, ‘under his obligation to exercise due diligence’, must notify the competent authority if his goods are fully or partially intended for offences such as human rights violations or terrorist activities. Tis stipulation deviates from the current requirement of positive knowledge and

introduces a new notion of diligence. It is unclear how companies are to implement this due diligence notion, which business processes need to be newly implemented accordingly and, above all, the extent of the companies’ obligation to acquire information is not specified either. Tis has the effect that the compliance effort within the company will increase significantly. At the same time, one can assume that the work volume of the responsible national authorities will have to expand in parallel, as numerous companies apply for negative certificates to hedge their bets. Te ‘human security approach’ makes it clear

that the Commission is moving away from traditional goals in export control. Hitherto, the export control pursued two main goals: preventing the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction (non-proliferation) and the unchecked distribution of conventional arms. Tis proposal shows that the intent is for companies to also take on additional responsibility in the area of protection of human rights and counter-terrorism. Tis socio-politically important and commendable goal puts additional strain on companies and

it will not be possible for them to adequately implement these. Both the protection of human rights and counter-terrorism measures are classic tasks in political action. Tis shall not be transferred to the area of responsibilities of commercial companies without automatically endangering the competitiveness through additional administration and lacking predictability and reliability for international partners. Instead, companies rather depend on receiving clear indications by the responsible state bodies on sensitive products, as well as critical target countries, persons and institutions. Te proposal for a new EU dual-use

regulation clearly shows many deficiencies. Over the next months the European Parliament and the Council will have to remove these shortcomings in order to adopt a new dual- use regulation, which in practice can also be implemented by firms in a realistic manner. O

David Santorum is a project manager for foreign trade and export promotion at Spectaris, a German high-tech industry association representing medical technology, optical technologies, and analytical, biological, laboratory, and ophthalmic devices.

SPIE establishes US export control working groups

Jennifer Douris, SPIE’s government affairs director, reports on what was discussed when three new export control working groups met for the first time at Photonics West in San Francisco in February


PIE, the international society for optics and photonics, in conjunction with the US

Department of Commerce Sensors and Instrumentation Technical Advisory Committee (SITAC), have formed three export control working groups: detectors and cameras, which covers uncooled, cooled, shortwave infrared (SWIR), crycoolers, readout integrated circuits (ROICs), and image intensifiers; lasers; and lenses and optics. Te first meeting was at Photonics West in San Francisco,

California, on 1 February. Te working groups are

comprised of representatives from industry and universities, with a purpose to assist in identifying areas in need of improvement in the export control system, as well as develop proposals to make a change. Te groups will also serve as a resource to the US government to provide advice regarding potential regulatory changes. In many cases, the proposals

developed by these groups will likely be those intended for the

14 Imaging and Machine Vision Europe • June/July 2017

Wassenaar Arrangement, an international body made up of 41 participating countries. Tese countries meet in Vienna, Austria, every year to make decisions on appropriate international export control standards for sensitive technologies, both dual-use and military. Each participating country is responsible for implementing the decisions made at Wassenaar through their own regulations and laws. Te arrangement is to contribute to regional and international security and stability.

Cryocoolers One of the topics covered in the first meeting of the detector and camera working group at Photonics West included a discussion regarding the current

technical parameter requirements for cryocoolers under Wassenaar, 6.A.2.d. A presentation was made during the meeting regarding the need for updates based on technology changes, growing commercial use and foreign availability. A point was made that almost all cryocoolers exceed the current threshold of 2,500 hours mean time to failure (MTTF), many from non-Wassenaar member countries.

Notice of Inquiries All three working groups discussed the recently released Notice of Inquiries (NOIs), one from the Department of State and one from the Department of Commerce. Te notices seek the public’s opinion on proposed changes to the recently


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