The Chemical and Biological Controls Division (CBC) is the focal point within the United States Government (USG) for implementing dual-use export controls for chemical and biological (CB) equipment, materials and technology (e.g., toxins, chemicals, fermenters, pumps, valves). These export controls are in place for chemical and biological weapons concerns and to prevent the diversion of such items to destinations and end-users of concern. These items are generally found in Category 1 (Materials, Chemicals, Microorganisms and Toxins) and Category 2 (Materials Processing) of the CCL.

CBC carries out this responsibility by:

  • Participating in multilateral export control activities with the Australia Group
  • Responsible for export licensing of CB items
  • Responsible for commodity classifications, advisory opinions, licensing determinations, and commodity jurisdiction requests for chemical, biological, and medical items.
  • Ensuring U.S. industry interests are taken into consideration in the development of export control laws and regulations.
  • Participating in interagency discussions on biological and chemical safety and security initiatives
  • Managing the Materials Technical Advisory Committee

CBC plays a strong role in implementing policies that promote U.S. nonproliferation and security goals while minimizing the burden to industry and protecting company business information.

Recent Licensing Activity

CBC processed 5069 licenses and 1101 commodity classifications in Calendar Year 2013. The top three licensed ECCNs are 2B350 (3154 licenses), 1C351 (839 licenses) and 1C350 (571 licenses)

CBC is here to answer any questions you have regarding chemical and biological items, please contact us:

For all questions pertaining to general licensing procedures or how to apply for an export license, please contact our Exporter Services Hotline at 202-482-4811.




  • In order to help exporters evaluate export requirements, the documents below provide detailed guidance on determining if a license is required and how to fill out an export license application.
  • How to complete an application for CB items

Recent Regulations affecting CB Items

  • On March 26, 2014, Federal register notice 79 FR 16664 was issued for the Implementation of Understandings reached at the June 2013 AG Plenary . Some of the changes made by this rule were as follows: removed the requirement for a license for Mexico for CB2 reasons in Supplement #1 to Part 738 added components to fermenters under 2B352.b; revised the "sample shipments" provisions in License Requirement Note 1 of ECCN 1C350 (Precursor chemicals) by changing the reporting requirement from quarterly to annual; and added a License Exception STA paragraph to the license exceptions section of ECCN 1C351 to clarify the existing eligibility requirements for certain items controlled under this ECCN.

  • STA –– a new license exception that authorizes the export, reexport, and transfer (in-country) of specified 1C351 toxins to destinations that pose relatively low risk. This rule also allows the use of license exception GOV for items controlled for CB reasons of concern.
  • GOV - this license exception applies to export of all CB items to cooperating government entities.  See Section 740.11 of the EAR for more information.




  • The Australia Group (AG)  is an informal forum of countries which, through the harmonization of export controls, seeks to ensure that exports do not contribute to the development of chemical or biological weapons. Coordination of national export control measures assists Australia Group participants to fulfill their obligations under the Chemical Weapons Convention and the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention to the fullest extent possible.

Mexico formally became the 42nd member of the Australia Group on August 12, 2013. For more information, see Australia Group press release  The AG Plenary will be held in Paris, France from June 2 - 6, 2014.



The Materials Technical Advisory Committee is the place for you to help mold and draft government decisions and regulations. This committee exclusively provides information to the Department of Commerce on the efficacy and impact of export regulations/controls on life science research and materials research. Membership allows you to be informed of pre-decisional activities, stay in the loop on deemed export requirements and export controls on items covered by the committee, and be aware of technology controls on such items.

What is a Technical Advisory Committee? Technical Advisory Committees (TACs) meet quarterly to advise the Department of Commerce (DOC) on the technical parameters for export controls applicable to dual use commodities and technology and on the administration of those controls. The TACs are composed of expert representatives from industry, academia with ex-officio government employees representing diverse points of view on the concerns of the exporting community. TAC members are appointed by the Secretary of Commerce, and serve terms of not more than four consecutive years. The membership reflects the Department's commitment to attaining balance and diversity. TAC members must obtain secret-level clearances prior to appointment. TAC meetings have an open session where all members of the public with interest are invited. Members of the TACs are not compensated for their services.

What is the MTAC? The Materials TAC covers a wide variety of items including articles, materials, and supplies for radar absorption, jet engine turbines blades, super conductivity, fluids, lubricants, and composites. Chemical precursors, biological agents, biological and chemical processing equipment are also under the MTAC purview. Many of the commodities in Category 1 and Category 2 are covered by the MTAC. The committee consists of technical experts, lawyers and export compliance people who create proposals for CCL reform, and for various export control regimes including Wassenaar Arrangement, Australia Group,the Nuclear Suppliers Group, and Missile Technology Control Regime.

MTAC Membership Information




Last Updated: January 2014



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