FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
CONTACT OFFICE OF PUBLIC AFFAIRS
Locke Announces First Indian Company to Receive Express Lane Status for U.S.-Indian Trade
First designation for a company in India will cut red tape and increase flow of high-technology trade between the two countries
Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke today announced an important step forward in the strategic partnership between the United States and India during remarks to the U.S.-India Business Council’s 34th Anniversary “Synergies Summit.”
General Electric India (GE India) has been tapped as the first Indian company to qualify as a validated end-user (VEU) in India, allowing the company to enter a pre-approved, export express lane as a trusted end user.
After an extensive background review, the VEU designation will allow GE India to receive certain controlled items from the United States, including civilian aircraft technology and explosive detection equipment without an individual license, cutting red tape and making the flow of trade more efficient between the countries.
That the VEU program was opened for India is an indication of the increased importance of the U.S.-India bilateral and commercial relationship.
“This is an important step in enabling a more rapid and efficient flow of sensitive technology between India and the United States,” Locke said. “It also is a significant effort to build trust between the United States and India. We're looking forward to reciprocal actions from our partner.”
The program is administered by the Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) and implemented by an interagency committee consisting of representatives from the Departments of Commerce, State, Defense, Energy and, when appropriate, the Treasury.
GE India will become eligible as a validated end-user later this month after the regulation is published in the Federal Register. Secretary Locke also encouraged additional Indian firms to take advantage of the VEU program.
“The VEU program is a significant initiative that promotes high technology trade while protecting U.S. national security,” Commerce Acting Under Secretary for Industry and Security Daniel O. Hill said. “We hope that other companies will take advantage of this new program designed to facilitate trade with trusted partners.”
In a final rule published in the Federal Register on June 19, 2007, BIS established Authorization Validated End User. On October 2, 2007, BIS published a rule making companies in India eligible to participate in the VEU program.
End-users that apply and are qualified by BIS as validated end-users are eligible to receive specified items under the general authorization “Authorization Validated End User” instead of under individual transaction-specific licenses. Companies in India participating in VEU must pass a rigorous national security review and agree to strict follow-on compliance obligations prior to qualification. Qualification for VEU benefits both the foreign participants and U.S. exporters by limiting the paperwork that must be completed for shipment authorization, thereby allowing export on demand as well as resource savings.