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ORA FAQs
What technologies are subject to the Commerce Department controls?

Generally, technologies subject to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) are those which are in the United States or of U.S. origin, in whole or in part. Most are proprietary. Technologies which tend to require licensing for transfer to foreign nationals are also dual-use (i.e., have both civil and military applications) and are subject to one or more control regimes, such as National Security, Nuclear Proliferation, Missile Technology, or Chemical and Biological Warfare.

Foreign technology with U.S.-origin technology commingled to a degree above a de minimis level is considered to be subject to the EAR. Technologies which may require an export license are those which are subject to the EAR and which are listed in the Commerce Control List, see Parts 734, 738, and 774 of the EAR.

Some technologies are under the exclusive jurisdiction of another agency of the U.S. government and are not subject to the EAR. These include defense services which are under the jurisdiction of the State Department and technology related to the production of special nuclear materials which is under the jurisdiction of the Energy Department. 

Still other technologies do not require any authorization because they are already "publicly available." These include patent applications; publicly available technology and software (other than software and technology controlled as encryption items) that are already published or will be published; technology which arises during or as a result of fundamental research; or technology which is educational. See Part 734 of the EAR for details.


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