Bureau of Export Administration
U. S. Department of Commerce

For Immediate Release
December 16, 1999

Commerce Department Will Remove 51 Indian Entities from Sanctions List

WASHINGTON -- The Commerce Department will remove 51 Indian entities from the list of entities originally sanctioned in 1998 in response to the detonations of nuclear explosive devices by India and Pakistan, Commerce Assistant Secretary for Export Administration R. Roger Majak announced. The changes will take effect after a rule is published in the Federal Register.

The action is based on a consensus decision by the Administration to more tightly focus the sanctions on those Indian entities most directly involved in proliferation activities of concern.

Removal of the entities will make it easier for them to obtain U.S. goods and technology -- especially non-sensitive products that ordinarily to do not require an export license for India. The U.S. policy of denial for dual-use items controlled for nuclear and missile technology reasons to all Indian and Pakistani entities remains unchanged, however.

Recent Congressional action supports today’s decision. The FY 2000 Defense Appropriations Act includes language that it is the sense of Congress that the list of nearly 300 Indian and Pakistani sanctioned entities is too broad and requires refinement. The Act also states that it is the sense of Congress that exports only of items that make material contributions to weapons of mass destruction and missile programs should be restricted.

Today’s action involves no changes in the items subject to sanctions -- which includes many routine items -- for entities remaining on the list. The Administration will continue to review both the list of sanctioned entities and products, and may make additional changes.

A list of the 51 entities covered by today’s decision is attached.