Open Individual Export Licences (OIELs)

Eligibility for an OIEL

Open Individual Export Licences (OIELs) are issued by the Export Control Joint Unit (ECJU) on a concessionary basis.

To justify applying for an OIEL, you must be an exporter with:

  • a record of at least 20 relevant Standard Individual Export Licence (SIEL) applications in the previous year for exports that you now wish to cover on an OIEL.
  • where this is not possible (for example, because your application relates to new business), you need a good business case to support your application. This needs to set out how many exports, of what nature and to what destination, you anticipate making in the next year and providing evidence (such as contract excerpts) to back up your case.

In submitting your business case, you should ensure that it is carefully considered and not simply a large extensive wish list of countries. For further top tips on making your OIEL application, see OIEL applications and supporting documentation.

Criteria for renewing an OIEL

If you already hold an OIEL and want to renew your coverage, the ECJU will expect you to have used it at least 20 times during the previous year. For dealer-to-dealer OIELs, usage of at least six times a year is acceptable. You will also be expected to meet the original criteria for use as detailed in your business case application.

Why are OIEL applications rejected?

Typical reasons why OIEL applications might be rejected include:

  • failure to include adequate goods descriptions
  • inclusion of unrealistic country lists
  • failure to provide an adequate business case

See common pitfalls to avoid in export licence applications.

You should be aware that there is no formal appeal procedure if you are refused an OIEL.

Applying for a SIEL

If you have had an application for an OIEL rejected by the ECJU, you can still apply for a SIEL, covering some or all of the same destinations and goods.

When considering a new SIEL application, the ECJU will take into account any factors that influenced its decision on the original OIEL.

Read more about Standard Individual Export Licences (SIELs).