The House of Commons EU Scrutiny Committee has cleared the EU’s measures adding 16 people and 12 entities that were recently designated by the UN to its sanctions on North Korea (see previous blog). Explaining why the UN’s new sectoral sanctions on North Korea had not also been implemented, Minister for Europe David Lidington stated that “transposition of the new UN sanctions measures to EU law will be complex” and so the EU decided to transpose the new listings first, in order to mitigate the risk of asset flight. The sectoral sanctions were later implemented on 1 April (see previous blog).
The Committee did not take issue with the Minister over-riding its scrutiny in this case, accepting as it has done in the past (see previous blog) that “The rapid transposition of UN sanctions designations into EU legislation is highly desirable…and ensures the effectiveness and credibility of the sanctions regime”. However, in view of tensions in the region remaining high and the prospect of further sanctions being imposed in the future, the Committee requested a full outline and analysis of the wider political context of the sanctions from the Minister, which it noted he had given only to a “minimal” extent so far. The full summary from the Committee is here.