Since 2006, the German Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control (BAFA) has been active in the field of implementing several outreach projects in different areas.
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Since 2006 BAFA has been mandated by the European Union (EU) with the task of implementing EU-Outreach programmes in the area of export control, both for Dual-use items and for conventional arms. The aim of these outreach programmes is to offer partner countries technical support to develop and/or strengthen their export control systems in order to prevent the international exchange of goods destined for the production of WMD as well the illicit transfer of conventional arms. In 2006, BAFA started to implement the EU Outreach Programme in Export Control of Dual-use Items. The EU Outreach programme on Export Control of Conventional Arms (COARM) has been conducted by BAFA since 2010. In 2014, BAFA was also mandated to implement the EU ATT Outreach Project (ATT-OP) which is co-funded by the German Federal Foreign Office and BAFA. In addition, BAFA was involved in the EU CBRN Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence Initiative as the consortiums leader of the project n° 5 on “Knowledge Development and Transfer of Best Practice of CBRN Import/Export Monitoring” (2013 – 2014) as well as consortium partner in project n° 8 “Prerequisite to strengthening CBRN national legal frameworks”. BAFA is further the implementing agency for project n° 38 “Export control outreach for Dual-use items”.
In addition to the efforts in the above-mentioned projects, which are funded by the European Union, BAFA started to implement outreach projects solely based on fundings by the German Federal Foreign Office in 2015. These projects offer the opportunity to organize tailor-made activities on a bilateral level as well as on a regional level, such as the ATT Implementation Support Measures and the Export Control Programme, which has its main focus on the area of conventional arms.
Since 2006, BAFA acts as the implementing instance for EU-funded projects. Among them is the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), the first-ever comprehensive international treaty with an aim to regulate the export of conventional arms and Dual-use goods. Furthermore, BAFA is active in the implementation of COARM, a project focused mainly on small arms and CoE38, a project designed to increase export control cooperation between the EU and the partner countries Jordan and Kazakhstan.
EU Arms Trade Treaty Outreach Project (ATT-OP)
The German Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control (BAFA) has been mandated to implement the EU’s activities in support of the implementation of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) as outlined in Council Decision 2013/768/CFSP and co-financed by the Government of the Federal Republic of Germany. The EU ATT Outreach Project (ATT-OP) aims at supporting the early entry into force, an effective implementation and the universalisation of the Arms Trade Treaty. Upon request, the EU project supports a number of states in strengthening their arms transfer control systems in order to support them in the implementation of the Arms Trade Treaty. The project also aims to increase awareness and ownership of the ATT at national and regional levels and therein contribute to its universalisation. In addition to its regional seminars, this project supported nine roadmap partner countries and seven ad hoc partners in Africa, Asia, Europe and Latin America and the Caribbean.
The new edition of this project was initiated on 29 May 2017 by Council Decision 2017/915. The new three-year project will build on the successes of the first EU Arms Trade Treaty Outreach project.
EU Council Decision 2015/2309 - COARM III Project
In December 2015, BAFA was once again entrusted with the implementation of the EU COARM Project (EU Council Decision 2015/768/CFSP “on the promotion of effective arms export controls”). This programme, which falls within the framework of the EU P2P initiative, aims to provide technical support (including in the areas of legislation, licensing and enforcement) to partner countries in order to strengthen their national arms export control systems. Additionally, it seeks to promote participation in international export control regimes for conventional arms and Dual-use items as well as the implementation of the Arms trade Treaty. Partner regions of the programme are North Africa, South Eastern Europe, as well as Eastern Europe and Caucasus. The programme also includes activities focused on the issue of arms diversion to be organised with partner countries in Western Africa and China. The COARM Project is scheduled over a period of 24 months until the end of 2017.
EU P2P EU Outreach in Export Control for Dual-Use
Separate and individual projects for Jordan and Kazakhstan have been developed seeking to provide targeted and long-term support in the area of Dual-use export controls for these two countries.
Jointly elaborated work plans for Jordan and Kazakhstan serve as a roadmap for the Implementation Phase of the project. A novelty in this project was the two years assignment of two long term experts based in Amman and Astana, who assist and consult the national agencies and authorities on site by developing a sustainable cooperation and interlinking between the partner country and Outreach team.
The first project started on 1 January 2014 and ended on 31 July 2017. An extension of the project was been agreed upon by the European Commission and BAFA and is currently implemented in line with the project partners Kazakhstan and Lebanon.
In addition to the EU funded projects, in 2015 the BAFA has commenced to implement projects that are funded by the German Foreign Office. Among these projects is the ATT Implementation Support Measures program, which aims to aid partner countries in the execution of the ATT by conducting a series of bilateral workshops and multi-country regional conferences as well as a bilateral cooperation project with the People’s Republic of China.
ATT Implementation Support Measures
Since 2015, the Federal Foreign Office is financing the ‘ATT Implementation Support Measures’ project, which is being implemented by the Federal Office for Economic Affairs and Export Control (BAFA) in cooperation with multiple states worldwide. The main focus of these efforts lies on the universalization of the UN Arms Trade Treaty (ATT). The ATT is the first internationally valid contract, setting internationally applicable standards for trade in conventional armaments. It came into effect on 24 December 2014, after more than 50 states had ratified the treaty.
Within the framework of the ATT Implementation Support Measures project, the aim is to intensively discuss the ATT agreement in various regional conferences, bilateral seminars and working meetings and to address further current topics related to export control, such as illicit trafficking in small arms and light weapons (SALW). These meetings and seminars aim for vivid exchange and sharing of experiences about the individual states’ current efforts and challenges in the course of the ratification and effective implementation of the ATT. The advantages of effective national systems are a consistent part of such discussions. Dozens of experienced EU-Experts in the respective areas of export control allow for intensive exchange of experience within the framework of this project.
In order to successfully tackle transnational challenges like illegal arms trade, strengthening international and regional cooperation and coordination play a decisive role. The seminars and conferences of the ATT Implementation Support Measures enable such cooperation between the delegations of different partner countries as well as between countries and various regional initiatives. In order to achieve a universal and robustly implementable global agreement, such continuous international dialog is essential.
Typical seminar and workshop participants range from government officials, employees of licensing, customs and persecution offices to representatives of international and regional organizations, non-governmental organizations as well as think tanks. While the focus of the 2015 project was laid on events with participants from the Caribbean region, South- and Southeast Asia was in the center of efforts for 2016.
Bilateral Cooperation with China
For the third year in a row the Federal Foreign Office made funds available to further support the bilateral cooperation between Germany and the People's Republic of China which enables to further deepen the longstanding relationship.
In 2015 the cooperation with China focused on a dialogue regarding the latest developments in the area of nonproliferation and export control in general. The exchange of information and views between all ministries and agencies involved further strengthened the trustful relationship and paved the way for further cooperation in 2016. The role of industry as a major stakeholder in the fight against nonproliferation was the main focus for the cooperation in 2016. Activities in Germany as well as in China with industry representatives were implemented to get into a comprehensive dialogue and further strengthen the ties between Germany and China as well as between the government and the industry. The cooperation in 2017 has a similar focus and aims for enhanced cooperation in the field of effective export controls.