Undertakings for OIELs and SIELs


When applying for an export licence from the Export Control Organisation (ECO), one of the most important elements is to ensure that you have attached an accurate and correct undertaking form (completed by the end-user company) along with all your submitted export details.

One of the most common errors in applications received by the ECO is an incorrect or missing undertaking which can cause frustrating delays with your application.

Correct completion of the undertakings needs to be taken seriously by your company. It is also vital that you have a good understanding of how they affect your business operations and licence application.

The purpose of a completed undertaking for export control purposes is to guard against the risk of UK exports being diverted or re-exported to 'undesirable' end-users. This diversionary risk is among those identified in the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria, which sets out the factors to be considered in all case-by-case assessments for applications of strategic (military or dual-use) items.

The Government believes the best way of minimising the risk of diversion is a thorough risk assessment at the licensing stage. This process includes careful examination by ECO of information about the proposed end-use and end-user of the proposed export.

As an export licence applicant, you have an important part to play in ensuring that your end-user completes the relevant undertaking as required by ECO and that you take care in attaching the relevant undertaking to any licence application.

This guide advises you on the relevant undertakings that ECO publish. It also offers guidance to exporters and end-users or consignees on completing the relevant template form.