Here is some further clarification. It is our descision not to export, all scopes are not banned from importation neither are all mil-dot scopes like many people think. The "mil-dot" scope ban rumors and misinformation in regards to import and export have been going around since about Sept. 12th, 2001. Here is some information that I've obtained over the last 5 years while importing our SS scopes and working with XOTIC and the USMC on the SSDS contract.
OFFICIAL NOTICE OF THE STATE DEPARTMENT
MARCH 4, 2004
We have received the Commodity Jurisdiction determination for the mil dot reticle and the riflescopes that have a mil dot reticle.
The State Department has ruled that mil dot reticle or riflescopes with a mil dot reticle are not subject to the licensing jurisdiction of the Department of State, if the item is specifically designed for commercial applications or used without modification/adaptation for military applications.
The mil dot reticle and riflescopes that have a mil dot reticle are subject to the licensing jurisdiction of the Department of Commerce. In accordance with the Export Administration Regulations, issued by the Department of Commerce, Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS), riflescopes (ECCN 0A987) including any applicable parts or accessories are controlled for crime control and the firearms convention treaty. Riflescopes must have an export license prior to exiting the U.S.A. to most countries. The Commerce Country Chart located in the Export Administration Regulations, Supplement 1 to Part 738 is a comprehensive list of the countries for which an export license is required. The latest issue to date of the Commerce Country Chart is attached for your reference. For future updates refer to the homepage of the Bureau of Industry and Security at www.bis.doc.gov. Once at the homepage click on policies and regulations, then export administration regulations (EAR), then EAR website, then EAR database, go to Supplement 1 to Part 738 for the listing.
A State Department license is required prior to shipment to any customer in any country, if the mil dot reticle or riflescopes with mil dot reticle are specifically designed, developed, configured, adapted or modified for use on United States Munitions List (USML) controlled items. Controlled items are subject to the licensing jurisdiction of the Department of State in accordance with the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (22 CFR 120 through 130).
If the scope is built to military specification for use by the military it is governed by the U.S. State Department. The actual restrictions are spelled out in detail under the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR), more specifically under The United States Munitions List Part 121.1, 22 CFR Ch. 1, f. Riflescopes and sighting devices that are not manufactured to military specifications qualify as "commercial items and are governed by the U.S. Department of Commerce under the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).
U.S. State Department International Trade Administration Regulations (ITAR)
Department of State Directorate of Defense Trade Controls
Department of Commerce Export
Export Administration Regulations (EAR)
ITAR covers any optic that is built to military specifications. There is no general mil-dot reticle restriction on exporting or importing. However a mil dot reticle is a common feature on most military issued scopes and this is where the misinformation stems from. The penalties are severe enough that most companies have applied a broad restriction on exporting them selves. For instance, if they are not sure what can and can't be exported it is easier to just not export any optics. The manufacturers notify us when their products get issued a NSN number with a letter stating that the product is now officially bought by the U.S. military under contract and can not be exported without the proper license.
Here is the part of the ITAR that refers to scopes: