Weapons, ammunition and military equipment - Export licence

This page was last modified on 20-03-2018

In order to export weapons, ammunition or military equipment outside the European Union (EU), operators must have an export permit (known as a licence), which may be:

  • individual at first (i.e. for a specific recipient);
  • and then global (for one or more recipients and/or destinations).

In Luxembourg, these licences are issued by the Licensing Office (Office des Licences).

Forms / Online services

Carry out your procedure:

  • By downloading a form

Who is concerned

All exporters established in Luxembourg must request a permit/licence from the Licensing Office prior to exporting weapons, ammunition and/or military equipment featuring on the Common military list of the European Union (EU CML list) outside the European Union.

At the time of the export declaration, the Customs and Excise Agency (Administration des Douanes et Accises) may require the exporter to apply for a licence.

Where applicable, the Licensing Office (alone or together with the Customs and Excise Agency as regards customs law) decides whether or not a licence is required.

Preliminary steps

CN Code

Before applying for a licence, the applicant has to know the precise tariff classification (CN, TARIC) of the goods concerned. The operator can find this information:

ML code

As well as the CN code, the applicant must also know the ML code of the goods in question. The operator can find this information in the Common military list of the European Union ("EU CML" list annexed to the most recent EU directive in force and published in the Official Journal A [Mémorial A]).

Duration and deadlines

In principle, export permits for weapons, ammunition and/or military equipment will be issued:

  • within 5 working days, provided the application is complete and contains all the necessary supporting documents, and the destination country is not classified as a particularly risky country;
  • and 45 days, if the application is not complete or in the event that the opinion of another national or foreign authority has been requested.

How to proceed

End-use certificate

Before the exporter submits his application for an export permit, the end user of the military equipment must draw up an original end-use certificate on the headed paper of the recipient company. There is no standard format for this document, but it must include the following, as a minimum:

  • names and contact details of the Luxembourg exporter/export company;
  • where applicable, the particulars of the intermediary;
  • the destination country and the name and particulars of the end user;
  • la description exacte des marchandises / technologies concernées par la transaction et les codes "CML" correspondants Next la Common Military List (CML) l'UE la plus récente en vigueur ;
  • the quantity of goods/technologies involved in the transaction with reference to the sales contract/invoice;
  • the value of the goods/technologies in EUR;
  • confirmation of end use of the exported equipment;
  • a formal written undertaking to provide proof of arrival of the goods in the destination country (e.g. copy of the customs import documents);
  • the surnames, first names, position and signature of the person signing the end-use certificate;
  • a non re-export clause, i.e. a statement in which the importer in the destination country, where applicable, the end user, undertakes not to re-export the military products without the express authorisation of the Luxembourg authorities in question;
  • where applicable, the Licensing Office may also request the inclusion of a non-proliferation clause, i.e. a clause stating that the military products will not be used in operations using cluster munitions.

The end-use certificates are usually signed/countersigned by the official authorities in the destination country. The Luxembourgish embassy, or an embassy representing Luxembourg in the final destination country (importing country), is responsible for authenticating the document, thus providing the guarantees that the commitments set out in this certificate are covered by the official authorities of the country.

Export permit application

The exporter must submit an export permit application for defence-related products to the Licensing Office.

The application must be accompanied by the following documents:

  • an explanatory letter;
  • a copy of the commercial contract;
  • a copy of the original invoice or the proforma invoice;
  • the end-use certificate drawn up by the end user, including the no re-export clause (see above);
  • where applicable and upon request from the Licensing Office, a formal undertaking from the exporter (the form is available at the Licensing Office).

Granting of permits

The Licensing Office assesses the requests on the basis, in particular, of the criteria laid down in EU legislation regarding the control of exports of military technology and equipment.

The Licensing Office may also seek the opinion of another Luxembourg or foreign authority.

The permit may be refused:

  • if the information on the end user or end use is deemed insufficient, suspicious or not compatible with the national and international provisions on these matters;
  • or if it is established that one or several 'globally identical' transactions (product/recipient) have been refused by other EU Member States during the past 3 years.

After export, the Licensing Office may also require that proof of the arrival at destination of the military equipment must be provided (often by means of an official customs document from the destination country).

Permit validity

Individual permits

Individual permits may be granted:

  • to individual exporters;
  • for an end user or recipient in a third country;
  • covering one or more items of military equipment;
  • within the limit of a determined quantity and value.

They are valid for 4 months throughout the EU and may be extended up to a maximum of 12 months.

If the operator intends to make several deliveries of the same goods over a longer period, he can apply for a global permit.

Global export permits

Global permits may be granted:

  • to individual exporters;
  • for delivery to:
    • one or more specific end users;
    • and/or in one or more specific third countries;
  • for a type or category of military equipment;
  • within the limit of a determined quantity and value.

They are valid for a minimum of 12 months, throughout the EU.

Who to contact

Ministry of the Economy
19-21, boulevard Royal
L-2449 - Luxembourg
Postal box BP 113 / L-2011 Luxembourg
Phone: (+352) 22 61 62
Fax: (+352) 46 61 38
Email office.licences@eco.etat.lu