The Government’s 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review mandated the creation of a number of joint units to bring together resources and expertise from across Whitehall to deliver more effective ways of working. One of these, the Export Control Joint Unit (ECJU), began operating on Monday 18 July 2016. The ECJU brings together operational and policy expertise from the Department for International Trade’s Export Control Organisation (ECO), the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) and Ministry of Defence (MOD) to promote global security through strategic export controls and facilitate responsible exports.

What will this change mean for exporters?

The export licensing process, including issuing MOD Form 680, will remain unchanged. Exporters should continue to use the SPIRE online export licensing system. The decision to grant or refuse an export licence in any individual case has become the responsibility of the Secretary of State of the newly formed Department for International Trade. The Secretary of State for Defence continues to be responsible for the decision to grant or refuse an MOD Form 680.

Individual staff involved in the export licensing process across ECO, FCO and MOD will retain their existing email addresses and titles for the immediate future. Since 18 July however, all ECJU staff have been based at the Department for International Trade, 1 Victoria Street, London SW1H 0ET. [Source: Notice to Exporters 2016/20: Export Control Joint Unit goes live.]