Sanctions are penalties applied by one country against another country, group(s), or individual(s). Such sanctions frequently include trade barriers (similar to export control), and also limitations, or outright bans, on financial transactions.

Global Affairs Canada notes that sanctions can be used as a foreign policy tool "for maintaining and restoring international peace and security, combatting corruption, and promoting respect for norms and values, including human rights". Sanctions can also be used to enforce international law and incite policy change.

Sanctions place restrictions on the activities permissible between Canadians and foreign states, individuals and/or entities. For example, if Canada has sanctions on a specific country that include an: arms embargo, asset freeze, export and import restrictions, financial prohibitions, and technical assistance prohibition, the University cannot enter into agreement where products, technology, results, or funding are transferred or otherwise contravene that specific sanction. 

The University-Industry Liaison Office monitors the Canadian sanctions list to identify projects which may involve listed countries. Similar to the re-export of export-controlled goods from another country, special care and consideration must be paid to the transfer of foreign goods and/or funds to countries, groups, or individuals under another country’s sanction list. The sanctions list for The United States of America is many times greater than the Canadian sanctions list. Caution must be exercised when transferring funds to another country when they originate from the US (e.g. the National Institutes of Health (NIH)).


UBC prides itself as an outwardly facing institution that welcomes global citizens to pursue opportunities for higher education and to expand their scope of knowledge through research. In a changing global political climate, when we are working with valued foreign partners, we need to be mindful of export control and sanctions. What might initially appear as a barrier may be overcome through consultation and transparent engagement between the university, our partners, and the Government of Canada.

UBC Crest The official logo of the University of British Columbia. Urgent Message An exclamation mark in a speech bubble. Caret An arrowhead indicating direction. Arrow An arrow indicating direction. Arrow in Circle An arrow indicating direction. Arrow in Circle An arrow indicating direction. Chats Two speech clouds. Facebook The logo for the Facebook social media service. Information The letter 'i' in a circle. Instagram The logo for the Instagram social media service. External Link An arrow entering a square. Linkedin The logo for the LinkedIn social media service. Location Pin A map location pin. Mail An envelope. Menu Three horizontal lines indicating a menu. Minus A minus sign. Telephone An antique telephone. Plus A plus symbol indicating more or the ability to add. Search A magnifying glass. Twitter The logo for the Twitter social media service. Youtube The logo for the YouTube video sharing service.