China to impose controls on exports of some aviation and aerospace equipment

BEIJING (AP) — China’s Commerce Ministry said Thursday it will restrict exports of some aviation and aerospace-related equipment and technology beginning July 1.

A notice seen Thursday on the ministry’s website said the move was to safeguard national security and interests and fulfill international obligations such as non-proliferation. Exports of items designated under the new rules will require export licenses.

The announcement was jointly released with China's General Administration of Customs and the Central Military Commission's equipment development department.

It said the export controls would apply to aircraft and aerospace engines and structural parts, engine manufacturing related equipment, software and technology. They also will include tools, molds, fixtures and other processing equipment used to make certain materials such as “superplastic” bonded with titanium, aluminum and their alloys.

Beijing and Washington have both moved to limit exports of products, technology and equipment considered vital to national security. China has also imposed sanctions against some U.S. aerospace and defense manufacturers to retaliate against sales of weapons to Taiwan, a self-governed island it claims as its territory.

The U.S. has export controls in force on exports of aero gas turbine engines, some aircraft and instruments, navigation equipment and systems.

The Commerce Ministry notice said the controls also would apply to technologies used in the development, making and use of the equipment, including design drawings, process specifications, process parameters, processing procedures, simulation data, and the like.

The overall impact of the move is unclear. China exports engine parts and other aircraft and space components. It also has developed its own jet engines. But it still relies on foreign suppliers for key parts of aircraft it has begun to produce using its own technology and manufacturers.