You may have heard the phrase “export control,” but what does it really mean and why is it important? Shilpani Perera, the Lab’s new Export Compliance Officer, sheds some light on the Lab’s program and how it impacts our research.
Elements: Can you provide a quick overview of what export control is?
Perera: The U.S. government regulates the transfer of products, technology, software and services considered to be strategically important to the U.S. in the interest of national security, economic, and/or foreign policy concerns. There is a complicated network of regulations that govern exports, known as “Export Controls.” These controls regulate the shipment or transfer of controlled items (exports) subject to U.S. jurisdiction. Transfer of export-controlled technology to a foreign national here in the U.S. is termed a “Deemed Export.”
Elements: Why is export compliance important, what’s at risk?
Perea: Non-compliance with export controls can result in substantial monetary and criminal penalties against both individuals and institutions. Additionally, export violations can result in the loss of research contracts, governmental funding, the privilege to export items, and negative publicity as export violations are often made public.
Elements: How should researchers work with you to ensure compliance?
Perera: In the coming months, we will roll out Lab-wide an export controls training for employees. Additionally, the Lab’s Export Controls Liaison Program will be revamped to include an export control contact in each scientific division, who will be the first point of contact for export matters. I will personally be working with each of them to ensure we have a robust export compliance program here at Berkeley Lab.