DTSA Licensing Directorate

team discussion while standing near a white board

DTSA's Licensing Directorate (LD) is the DoD entry and exit point for all DoD actions related to the U.S. national security review of Department of State export and import licensing of defense articles, defense services, and the Department of Commerce export licensing of dual use items involving direct commercial sales.  The Directorate reviews on average over 60,000 munitions and dual use export license applications per year.

The Licensing Directorate also coordinates the DoD review of commodity jurisdiction (CJ) requests to determine the proper jurisdiction for controlled technology.  LD coordinates proposed changes to the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) and the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) to assist the regulatory departments in the designation of articles, services, and items on their respective export control lists.  LD also coordinates the DoD review of export violations in the form of voluntary and directed disclosures for purposes of determining harm to U.S. national security.

Munitions Licensing Division

  • Processes an average of 35,000 munitions export license applications, commodity jurisdiction requests, and export violation reviews from the Department of State (DoS)
  • Conducts initial evaluation of export licenses for technical, policy and intelligence concerns. Licenses with low national security or technology security concerns are returned back to DoS with a final DoD recommendation.  Licenses requiring further review are sub-staffed to DoD military departments and agencies.
  • Develops and adjudicates the final DoD recommendation position based on input provided by staffed DoD military departments and agencies, and provides the Department of State the final DoD national security recommendation.
  • Participates in technology security teams to address key DoD major defense and cooperative programs (e.g., Joint Strike Fighter [JSF] and Missile Defense).
  • Participates in outreach programs with the U.S. defense industry through formal education conferences on U.S. export control and meetings regarding new technologies and business initiatives.
  • Proposes and reviews changes to the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) and the U.S. Munitions List (USML) to ensure proper designation of defense articles and defense services.
  • Contributes to formulation of DoD technology security policy concerning international transfer of defense related goods.
  • Participates in interagency fora concerning individual licensing actions, commodity jurisdictional determinations, and violations of the Arms Export Control Act (AECA).

Dual Use Division

  • Receives dual-use license applications from the Department of Commerce (DoC).
  • Evaluates licenses for technical, policy and intelligence/end-user-based concerns.  
  • Staffs applications requiring input from DoD services and agencies to appropriate components and develops and adjudicates the final DoD position.
  • Provides DoD recommendations to the Department of Commerce, consistent with U.S. national security and DoD's technology security objectives.
  • Tracks DoC positions and escalates DoC-approved licenses through the Operating Committee (OC) and the Advisory Committee on Export Policy (ACEP) when they are inconsistent with DoD's recommendations.
  • Meets with industry on a regular basis to discuss technology trends and licensing initiatives.
  • Represents DoD in U.S. interagency fora to deliberate dual use licenses that fall within the scope of the Australia Group, Missile Technology Control Regime and Nuclear Suppliers Group.
  • Provides DoD position on proposed changes to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR), in coordination with other DoD components.

DTSA's Role within Export Control

DTSA administers DoD's decision for export licenses

DTSA serves as a reviewing agency for the export licensing of dual-use commodities and munitions items and provides technical and policy assessments on export license applications.

Timely Decisions in a Complex Environment

infographic depicting DTSA provides industry with DoD decisions in less than 20 days

During the last decade, the global market for defense technology intensified around 2008. In 2014, industry was provided with DoD's decision in 20 days or less as DTSA's caseload reached 60 thousand reviews per year.

Contact Info

  • DTSA Licensing Directorate
  • Phone: 571-372-2356

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