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CoCom is an acronym for Coordinating Committee for Multilateral Export Controls. CoCom was established by Western bloc powers in the first five years after the end of World War II, during the Cold War, to put an arms embargo on COMECON countries.
CoCom ceased to function on March 31, 1994, and the then-current control list of embargoed goods was retained by the member nations until the successor, the Wassenaar Arrangement, was established.
CoCom had 17 member states: Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Japan, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom and the United States.
Laws and regulations
In the United States, CoCom compliance was implemented in the 1960s via the Arms Export Control Act (AECA) and the State Department's regulatory supervision on AECA via International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), which are still in effect.
Toshiba Machine Company of Japan and Kongsberg Group of Norway supplied eight computer-guided propeller milling machines to the Soviet Union between 1982 and 1984, an action that violated the CoCom regulations. The United States's position is that this greatly improved the ability of Soviet submarines to evade detection. Congress moved to sanction Toshiba, and bar imports of its products into the United States.
In GPS technology, the phrasing "COCOM Limits" is also used to refer to a limit placed to GPS tracking devices that should disable tracking when the device realizes itself to be moving faster than 1,000 knots (1,900 km/h; 1,200 mph) at an altitude higher than 60,000 feet (18,000 m). This was intended to avoid the use of GPS in intercontinental ballistic missile-like applications.
Some manufacturers apply this limit when both speed and altitude limits are reached, while other manufacturers disable tracking when only a single limit is reached. In the latter case, this causes some devices to refuse to operate in very high altitude balloons.
- International Traffic in Arms Regulations
- Arms Export Control Act
- Defense Security Cooperation Agency
- Export Control Classification Number
- Yasuhara, Y. (1991). "The Myth of Free Trade: The Origins of COCOM 1945–1950". The Japanese Journal of American Studies 4: 127–148.[dead link]
- js (October 6, 2010). "COCOM GPS Tracking Limits". RAVTrack.com. Retrieved July 26, 2011.
- Graham-Cumming, John. "GAGA-1: CoCom limit for GPS". jgc.org. Retrieved July 26, 2011.
- Mastanduno, M. (1992). Economic containment: CoCom and the politics of East-West trade. Cornell paperbacks. Cornell University Press, Ithaca, N.Y.
- Noehrenberg, E. H. (1995). Multilateral export controls and international regime theory: the effectiveness of COCOM. Pro Universitate.
- Yasuhara, Y. (1991). The myth of free trade: the origins of COCOM 1945-1950. The Japanese Journal of American Studies, 4.
- CoCom control lists, as published by the British Government
- CFAO 36-56 -- Export Controls Over Strategic and Military Goods
- Establishment of New General License for Shipments to Country Groups QWY and the People's Republic of China
- The reincarnation of CoCom: Explaining post-war export controls
- Export Control Blog
- THE TOSHIBA-KONGSBERG INCIDENT: SHORTCOMINGS OF COCOM, AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR INCREASED EFFECTIVENESS OF EXPORT CONTROLS TO THE EAST BLOC, Wende A. Wrubel