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Export Licenses

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is responsible for ensuring that all goods entering and exiting the United States do so in accordance with all applicable U.S. laws and regulations. Although CBP enforces these export regulations for various other government agencies, specific questions pertaining to commodity licensing requirements should be directed to that lead agency.

Agency information, telephone numbers, and basic commodities which may require export licenses can be obtained by viewing either the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security, Department of State, Directorate of Defense Trade Controls, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Drug Enforcement Administration, Nuclear Regulatory Commission, Office of Foreign Assets Control or the Bureau of the Census websites. These sites include information from numerous other agencies with export control responsibilities.

Exports may require a Shipper's Export Declaration (SED). The Correct Way To Fill Out The Shipper's Export Declaration site provides step by step instructions on how to complete an SED and when an SED is required.

Further guidance regarding export licenses should be directed to the CBP port of export location used to export your goods.

The URLs to the right are for a series of questions and answers, which may be useful in determining if a license is required for either the Department of State or Department of Commerce. Additional questions and answers are provided to provide some answers for common questions on Shipper's Export Declarations.


Last modified: 
January 15, 2014