An update on Personal Protective Equipment exports for 2021

Medical mask

As we have previously communicated with blogs and a podcast earlier this year regarding the exporting of specific PPE items that are restricted for export, we have a new update to report.

FEMA has again extended and modified the temporary final rule designating the list of scarce and critical materials that cannot be exported from the United States without explicit approval by FEMA. This rule is effective from December 31, 2020, until June 30, 2021.

FEMA will continue to implement its rule with the cooperation and assistance of other U.S. Government agencies, including CBP, and will work with manufacturers, brokers, distributors, exporters, and shippers to ensure that the applicable requirements are carried out. Any covered materials intended for export may be detained by CBP while FEMA conducts its review of the shipment. FEMA will review the shipment and provide notification as soon as possible regarding the disposition of the covered materials under this order, provided that any goods that have been detained by CBP and are subsequently made subject to a DPA-rated order will be consigned to FEMA pending further distribution or agency direction.

FEMA is further clarifying the types of PPE surgical masks subject to the allocation order and is adding specific syringes and hypodermic needles (whether distributed separately or attached together). The continued allocation of certain PPE materials reflects current domestic demand, as indicated by the number of open requests for such materials from state, local, tribal, and territorial (SLTT) jurisdictions.

Specifically—FEMA is continuing the designation of Surgical N95 Filtering Facepiece Respirators as covered materials. Surgical N95 respirators for medical use are still subject to high demand within the United States, and supply is not expected to catch up with demand at this time given the current forecasts of increases in confirmed cases and hospitalizations. 

FEMA is continuing the designation of PPE surgical masks as covered materials due to the continued inability of domestic supply to meet current demands, with modification. In the original temporary final rule, FEMA designated ‘‘PPE surgical masks, including masks that cover the user’s nose and mouth and provide a physical barrier to fluids and particulate materials.’’

For US companies that would like to export their PPE supplies to their employees outside the US, the exception that permits the export still exists however, you still need to follow the guidance that has been in place since April 2020. This includes the submission of a letter to FEMA seeking approval and of course, having received the official approval back from FEMA.

Should you have any questions regarding the approval steps or products that are covered under this temporary regulation please do not hesitate to contact me.