As of October 12, 2017, the United States is no longer maintaining a general embargo against Sudan and U.S. persons can engage in most transactions with Sudan and its government without a license. As a reward for "positive actions" by the Sudanese government in thwarting terrorism and allowing humanitarian aid to reach war victims, the United States1 lifted several sanctions against Sudan first imposed by President Bill Clinton in 1997.
Additionally, the revocation of these sanctions does not eliminate the need to comply with other applicable provisions of the law, including the Bureau of Industry and Security's export control regulations. Additionally, the October 12 action does not affect OFAC sanctions related to the conflict in Darfur, and does not affect OFAC designations of any Sudanese persons pursuant to sanctions authorities other than E.O.s 13067 and 13412.
This revocation comes nine months after the Department of Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control ("OFAC") issued a temporary general license that authorized all transactions previously prohibited by the Sudanese Sanctions Regulations ("SSR") and by Executive Orders 13067 and 13412.2 Because these sanctions have now been lifted, the temporary general license is no longer needed or valid and U.S. persons can now engage in most transactions with Sudan and its government without a license from OFAC.
It is important to note, however, that some U.S. economic and financial sanctions on Sudan remain in place. Most notably, this revocation does not remove Sudan from the State Sponsors of Terrorism List, which means an OFAC license is still required for U.S. persons to export or reexport to Sudan certain agricultural commodities, medicine, and medical devices. Parties will not usually be required to apply for a specific license, as OFAC issued General License A (effective October 12, 2017) to allow for these exports and reexports as long as they are shipped within 12 months of the date of the signing of the contract.
This revocation is also not retroactive, which means it does not, and will not, affect past, present, or future OFAC enforcement investigations or actions associated with any apparent violations of the SSR relating to activities that, effective October 12, 2017, are no longer prohibited but occurred prior to that date.
Although the general embargo against Sudan has now been lifted, U.S. persons should still be careful to ensure that transactions involving Sudan or Sudanese nationals complies with the remaining restrictions in place.