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(noun) An export is "[a] domestic good or service that is sold to a foreign resident from a U.S. resident.[1]

(verb) Export means


The export of purely commercial items and knowledge is regulated by industrial espionage laws, patent controls and other related legislation. The export of purely military items and knowledge is governed by the “ITAR” (International Traffic in Arms Regulations).

The acquisition or other foreign control of companies conducting national security-related business in the United States is addressed by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS). Items or knowledge having dual-use (i.e., applicability in both the military and commercial spheres) are subject to the Export Administration Regulations (EAR) and fall into two sub-categories. The first of these concerns items that are transferred or released across a United States border (or re-transferred or released abroad) and the second addresses technology or source code (knowledge) that is transferred across a United States border (or re-transferred abroad).

Depending on the specific item involved, the former category of activity may be controlled pursuant to the Commerce Control List (CCL) as set forth in the EAR. In contrast, technology or source code that is transferred (or released) to a foreign national within the confines of the United States is addressed under the Deemed Export regulatory regime. As with cross-border transfers, such transfers within the United States may also, depending on the subject matter, be subject to the EAR or found on the CCL. The release of tangible items within the United States (or software in object code form) does not constitute a Deemed Export, although the release of knowledge about such items may.

The term "export" also includes the re-export to a third country of “commodities, software, and technology that have been exported from the United States” to a second country, and “the electronic transmission of non-public data that will be received abroad.”[4]


  1. U.S. Bureau of Statistics, Glossary (full-text).
  2. U.S. Export Administration Regulations, Part 772 (15 C.F.R. §772.1).
  3., GIS Glossary (full-text).
  4. See 15 C.F.R. §730.5.

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