Frequently Asked Questions

935. Does the blocking of Hidri Trust and Red Sea Trading Corporation (RSTC) restrict the ability of U.S. and non-U.S. persons to engage in humanitarian-related transactions or activity in Eritrea or Ethiopia?

Answer

No.  OFAC has implemented three authorizations and an exemption under Executive Order (E.O.) 14046 to ensure that humanitarian assistance can flow to the people of Ethiopia, Eritrea, and the greater Horn of Africa region.  These authorizations and exemption apply to all persons sanctioned under E.O. 14046, including Hidri Trust and RSTC.

Concurrent with the issuance of E.O. 14046, OFAC issued General Licenses (GLs) 1 and 2  to ensure that nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and certain International Organizations (IOs) and other international entities, respectively, may continue to engage in and facilitate humanitarian-related transactions or activity to Ethiopia, Eritrea, or the greater Horn of Africa region.  OFAC also issued GL 3 , which authorizes U.S. persons to conduct all transactions and activities that are ordinarily incident and necessary to the exportation or reexportation of covered agricultural commodities, medicine, medical devices, replacement parts and components for medical devices, or software updates for medical devices to Ethiopia or Eritrea, or to persons in third countries purchasing specifically for resale to Ethiopia or Eritrea.  Please see FAQs 925 and 926, for additional information. 

E.O. 14046 also exempts the official business of the U.S. government by its employees, grantees, and contractors from the prohibitions, enabling continued support of development activity, life-saving humanitarian assistance, and longer-term assistance to address basic needs of at-risk populations in Ethiopia, Eritrea, or the greater Horn of Africa region.

As described in FAQ 927, non-U.S. persons, including NGOs and financial institutions, would not risk exposure to sanctions for engaging in certain humanitarian-related transactions or activity with Hidri Trust and RSTC that are otherwise exempt or authorized for U.S. persons, such as transactions involving the provision of certain humanitarian assistance or export of humanitarian goods to Ethiopia, Eritrea, or the greater Horn of Africa region.

In addition, OFAC issued GL 4 , “Authorizing the Wind Down of Transactions Involving Hidri Trust or Red Sea Trading Corporation.”  GL 4 authorizes, through 12:01 a.m. eastern standard time, December 14, 2021, subject to certain exceptions, all transactions and activities prohibited E.O. 14046 that are ordinarily incident and necessary to the wind down of transactions involving Hidri Trust or RSTC.  Transactions authorized by GLs 1, 2, or 3, including transactions related to the export or reexportation of covered agricultural commodities, medicine, medical devices, replacement parts and components, or software updates, will continue to be authorized even after the expiration of GL 4.
 

Date Released
November 12, 2021