Part II: Will the Government Shutdown Affect My Freight?

October 2, 2013
By Michelle Kelley

A brief update on the government shutdown. You can read Part I, here.

By the numbers

  • 10% of U.S. Customs employees furloughed
  • 60% of Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) furloughed


  • Commerce Department’s website is offline.
  • Schedule B Search Engine is online, here.

Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS)

  • Website is online.
  • Will continue investigations, prosecutions, and other activities with DOD, DOJ, FBI, ICE, and other law enforcement/intelligence agencies.

In terms of export administration, BIS will keep certain minimal activities in operation, such as:

  • Processing export licenses essential to protecting the U.S. national security
  • Evaluating transactions involving U.S. export-controlled items to ensure they are exported in accordance with export control requirements

Department of State

  • It is unclear which agency activities will remain unaffected.
  • Will be minimally staffed during the shutdown.
  • Will continue to perform functions necessary for “emergencies” involving the safety of human life or protection of property, including the conduct of foreign affairs and other activities essential to national security.

Department of the Treasury, Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)

OFAC will continue to perform the following functions:

  • Administering the Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) list and enforce economic and trade sanctions
  • Implementing/administering new sanctions through newly issued Executive Orders
  • Limited handling of incoming inquiries via its telephone hotline

We will keep you posted on any major news regarding the government shutdown.