Until recently, Mexico lacked an export control regime for conventional weapons, dual-use goods and software and technologies that pose a risk of interception. On June 16 2011 the Ministry of the Economy published a resolution making the export of such goods subject to prior approval. The new regime came into effect on October 21 2011.

The aim of the resolution is to control the manufacture and proliferation of conventional weapons and weapons of mass destruction. It seeks to do so by establishing strict controls, without prejudice to the provisions of other regulatory instruments that govern export controls or permits for the goods in question.

Certain dual-use goods, conventional weapons and their components, as well as software and dual-use technologies that fall into one of the categories in the Wassenaar Arrangement,(1) are subject to export permits, provided that such goods are not specifically governed by other regulatory instruments issued before the resolution.

The transfer from Mexico to any other place of software, technology or dual-use goods, including transmissions that contain data-processing programs, or the transfer of data or communications by electronic media, telephone, facsimile, satellite or any other means of communication that may be subject to interception ,shall be deemed an export operation. As such, it will be subject to a relevant export permit from the ministry.

Exemptions from the requirement to obtain an export control permit apply to goods exported:

  • by the government for use in humanitarian or peacekeeping missions;
  • by Mexican companies to the United States or Canada; or
  • to a final destination state which is a party to one of the export control regimes in which Mexico participates (as listed in the resolution) or with which Mexico maintains a reciprocal acknowledgement of export control systems.

The resolution establishes the Committee for Export Control of Dual-Use Goods, Software and Technologies. Its purpose is to verify that the application of export controls meets the highest standards of international security set by the Wassenaar Arrangement, the Australia Group and the Nuclear Suppliers Group. The committee will set policies and guidelines for analysing applications for export permits and will endeavour to ensure that all high-technology goods that are susceptible to interception remain within Mexican control at all times.

For further information on this topic please contact Adrián Vázquez, Horacio A López-Portillo, Eduardo Zepeda or Veronica Vázquez Bravo at Vázquez Tercero y Asociados by telephone (+52 55 5534 36 36), fax (+52 55 5534 91 95) or email ([email protected], [email protected], [email protected] or [email protected]).


(1) The Wassenaar Arrangement on Export Controls for Conventional Arms and Dual-Use Goods and Technologies (July 12 1996).