MEP: more must be done for effective export controls dangerous technologies

Dutch Member of the European Parliament, Marietje Schaake (ALDE/D66) welcomes the conclusions of the European Trade ministers today on the export of dangerous technologies. Important producers of hacking and surveillance technologies are located in Europe. Those systems can be used for human rights violations and to attack European digital infrastructure. Schaake: "Over the last years, it has become painfully clear that European products have played a central role in repression in Bahrein, Ethiopia and Egypt, and elsewhere. It is good that ministers have recognized the importance of the problem today, but their words must turn into action. From the European Parliament, that is what we will actively push for." Transparency  More strictly controlling the export of dangerous technology can prevent it falling into the wrong hands. Schaake: "Steps have been taken in the last months, but the real opportunity for structural change will be next year when we look to revise the European export control policy. I want more attention for human rights and more transparency in the system, so that exporting companies and the controlling governments can be held to account for the choices they make." Criteria At the end of the year, new export control lists will come into force, which will make sure that some technologies will require licenses before export. "It is essential that we use precise criteria so that we control the right products. As a liberal, I would not support overregulation, especially when it comes to the internet and technology. It is clear that the status quo is unsustainable, but we need to make sure we do not control products which are not dangerous or the we restrict research."