News article

Brexit: Export licences and special rules

5 February 2020

Licences, certificates and special rules

From January 2021, there will be changes to the licences, certificates and special rules to take different types of goods out of the UK.

Animals, plants, food and agricultural products

Chemicals, drugs and waste


Controlled goods

Controlled goods include military items, dual-use items (items with both civil and military uses) firearms and items that can be used for torture or capital punishment.

Goods and services used for both civilian and military purposes (‘dual use’)

Check if you need a licence if you:

  • export high-tech products like specialist computers, radios and other communications equipment
  • develop software that could be used for information security systems (for example, cryptographic technology)
  • share information, knowledge or skills that could be used to make weapons


There are different types of sanctions for finance, trade and immigration. You may also not be allowed to export to someone on the financial sanctions list.

Check if your goods or services will be controlled by UK sanctions regimes under the Sanctions Act when exporting.