Arms Control:

U.S. Efforts to Control the Transfer of Nuclear-Capable Missile Technology

NSIAD-90-176: Published: Jun 1, 1990. Publicly Released: Jun 11, 1990.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO examined certain aspects of the Missile Technology Control Regime (MTCR), focusing on: (1) whether the U.S. agencies involved had adopted specific procedures to implement MTCR; (2) the numbers of MTCR-related license applications processed and their disposition; (3) the effectiveness of interagency coordination; and (4) the adequacy of U.S. resources devoted to MTCR.

GAO found that: (1) U.S. export licensing authorities had different guidance and procedures for determining which export license applications might be subject to MTCR restrictions; (2) export authorities identified 128 license applications subject to missile technology controls, and identified about 1,450 export license applications related to missile technology; (3) the United States reported to MTCR members 29 license denials, and other members reported 13 denials; (4) no MTCR-restricted items were approved for export to Iraq; (5) Iraq's approved export licenses involved items not covered by MTCR; (6) officials from several agencies considered the U.S. export licensing authorities' initial efforts ineffective; (7) U.S. defense and arms exports authorities had seven full-time personnel providing assistance on license applications and other issues related to MTCR; and (8) MTCR has many problems, including the need to ensure adherence to its guidelines by other countries that are major missile sources.

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