Export Controls:

Assessment of Commerce Department's Foreign Policy Report to Congress

NSIAD-86-172: Published: Aug 19, 1986. Publicly Released: Aug 19, 1986.

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Allan I. Mendelowitz
(202) 275-5889
contact@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

GAO examined the Secretary of Commerce's January 1986 report to Congress on extending the foreign policy controls in effect prior to the passage of the Export Administration Amendments Act of 1985, to ensure that it fully complied with the statutory reporting requirements.

GAO found that, although the 1986 report met the act's requirements, it had certain shortcomings, specifically: (1) the sections addressing alternative means and enforcement had little explanation; and (2) the sections on economic impact generally examined the economic effects of particular controls, but failed to explain the limitations in estimating economic impact. GAO believes that future reports should provide a better explanation of the consideration given to alternatives to the controls, the difficulties in enforcing them, and the limitations in assessing their economic impact.

Recommendations for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: The Department of Commerce expanded its discussion of this matter in subsequent reports.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Commerce should provide, in future reports, a fuller discussion of alternative means available to achieve the purpose of the controls, suitable within the context of U.S. relations with the target country, and, if any alternative means are deemed to be unsuitable or have been used unsuccessfully in the past, the reasons why, including statutory constraints.

    Agency Affected: Department of Commerce

  2. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Commerce expanded its discussion of this matter in subsequent reports.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Commerce should more fully and clearly discuss, in future reports, the difficulties in enforcing export controls for foreign policy reasons and specifically address the problems with re-exports.

    Agency Affected: Department of Commerce

  3. Status: Closed - Implemented

    Comments: Commerce expanded its discussion of this matter in subsequent reports.

    Recommendation: The Secretary of Commerce should include, in future reports, both an introductory discussion of the broader economic factors affecting trade and the limitations of any analysis of the economic impact of a control and a more consistent presentation of information in the individual economic impact sections.

    Agency Affected: Department of Commerce

 

Explore the full database of GAO's Open Recommendations »

Sep 22, 2016

Sep 20, 2016

Sep 7, 2016

Aug 31, 2016

Aug 25, 2016

Aug 15, 2016

Jul 14, 2016

Jul 6, 2016

Looking for more? Browse all our products here