Saab operates in an area where there are both national and international rules and regulations that the company must comply with concerning Export control.
All exports of defence equipment from Sweden and other countries where Saab has operations are subject to applicable laws and regulations. Export control is legislation that regulates export of goods, services, and technology. A major part of Saab’s products, services and technologies are regulated by Swedish export control legislation.
Impact of Export Compliance
The UN Charter states that it is the inherent right of each country to protect its citizens from armed aggression and a military defence is the ultimate prerequisite for this. A domestic defence industry is an important component of defence capabilities but requires sales and technology cooperation with other countries to develop over the long term.
Export permission can be granted if there are security and defence policy reasons for the export and if it is compatible with Swedish foreign policy interests. Export should not conflict with any of Sweden’s international commitments or obligations. Decisions on export authorizations are decided on a case-by-case basis by the Inspectorate of Strategic Products (ISP) which considers a number of criteria in its overall assessment, including the situation regarding respect for human rights and international humanitarian law in the intended recipient country. ISP also considers the type of product the decision applies to. Saab’s subsidiaries in other countries adheres to the export control regulations of the respective country in question.
While defence equipment helps to uphold human rights, if misused, they can also be used for violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. The export of defence equipment therefore entails a high degree of responsibility, and the area is consequently surrounded by strict regulations. The UN Sustainable Development Goals highlights the need to combat illicit arms flows.
Governance of topic
The company has policies and tools to facilitate compliance with export control regulations that apply to its products, technologies, and operations. The Head of Export Compliance is responsible for the company’s overarching policy, directives, and governing policy documents as well as for providing advice to the businesses on operational issues and monitoring compliance within the company. In addition, each business area has its own export control organization to manage the work at an operational level. To facilitate collaboration and priorities needs, Saab also has an Export Control Council with representatives from business areas.
Saab has a close ongoing dialogue with export controlling authorities to ensure compliance and build knowledge together with stakeholders. The Swedish government annually produces an extensive report to the Swedish parliament on export control of military equipment and dual-use products. The annual report and other information can be found at ISP’s web site.