Extraterritorial Application of the Export Administration Act of 1979 Under International and American Law

This Note investigates the legality of the extraterritorial application of the EAA under American and international law, with a particular focus on the presidential action in the Soviet Oil and Gas Equipment Export Controls case (hereinafter the Soviet Pipeline case). Part I examines the language and legislative history of the EAA and concludes that Congress clearly and affirmatively expressed its intention to apply export controls to foreign subsidiaries of American corporations as well as goods and technology that originate in the United States. Part II analyzes the extraterritorial application of the EAA under the generally recognized principles of international law. The Note argues that the United States’ bases for extraterritorial jurisdiction are generally unsupportable. Additionally, even if the United States did have a valid ground for jurisdiction, considerations such as comity and respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of foreign nations should persuade the United States to acquiesce to assertions of territorial jurisdiction by affected states in the event of a conflict.