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The U.S. State Department’s much anticipated interim final rule reorganizing the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) is expected to go into effect September 6, 2022. 

The interim final rule, originally published by the U.S. State Department’s Directorate of Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) on March 23, 2022, will reorganize and consolidate definitions in the ITAR. Part of a broader agency effort to reorganize the ITAR, this new structure will improve the organization of the regulations by concentrating authorities, policies, and definitions into distinct and logical subparts, removing duplicative text, and standardizing section structure and style. The DDTC has stated that the rule does not make substantive revisions to the regulations or impose new requirements, but rather, improves clarity.

Prior to this rulemaking, definitions were generally spread throughout the subchapter. Once the rule goes into effect, part 120 will be divided into three subparts: Subpart A – General Information; Subpart B – General Policies and Processes; and Subpart C – Definitions. This new organization is intended to provide readers with a roadmap for the regulations. 

  • Subpart A – General Information: consolidates and explains the legislative authority and purpose of the regulations to assist in understanding their importance and source.
  • Subpart B – General Policies and Processes: outlines the general processes and policies of the ITAR.
  • Subpart C – Definitions: provides a consolidated list of defined terms that are applicable throughout the ITAR. DDTC, however, notes that the definitions will not be in alphabetical order.

Part and section-specific information and definitions will continue to be located in the applicable part or section of the regulations.

Other than the changes described above, a list of changes believed to be of interest to the regulated community can be found here. This is the first of several rules in DDTC’s ITAR reorganization project, so DDTC will gradually implement these changes.    

As of August 17, 2022, the State Department circulated and completed interagency review of a final rule that will reorganize and consolidate definitions in the ITAR. While the final rule has not yet been made public, Buchanan’s International Trade and National Security team is closely monitoring the State Department’s reorganization of the ITAR and will keep the regulated community informed of any further State Department action.

Contact our International Trade and National Security team if you have any questions with respect to U.S. export controls generally or the ITAR reorganization specifically.