As reported in a prior blog, the EU is looking to tackle the trade in illicit cultural goods by introducing import controls at EU borders.… Read More »Adoption of the Regulation on the Import of Cultural Goods: Start Preparing Now!
Import & Export of cultural goods
At the end of 2018, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) opened a consultation on the proposed changes that would introduce a… Read More »DCMS Consultation on National Treasures: Final Chance To Have Your Say!
2018 was the European Year of Cultural Heritage, during which the EU pledged to take action to stem the illicit trafficking of cultural goods both… Read More »The Proposed EU Regulations on the Import of Cultural Goods
The export office of the City of Bologna revokes the export licence granted for a portrait of Camillo Borghese by Gérard
The export office of the City of Bologna has recently attracted media attention following the revocation of an export licence granted for a portrait of… Read More »The export office of the City of Bologna revokes the export licence granted for a portrait of Camillo Borghese by Gérard
Following last summer’s amendments to the Italian export legal framework (see our blog of 27 September 2017), additional changes to the export licensing process have… Read More »Another small step towards a liberalisation of Italian export controls
Traditionally considered among the strictest in Europe, Italian export regulations have just been amended following an almost three-year debate. The discussion on the reasons for the… Read More »A (very) small step towards a liberalisation of Italian export controls
Earlier this year we reported that Germany’s government was in the process of legislating to protect objects of national heritage and restrict their export from… Read More »Update – New German Export Provisions for the “Protection of Cultural Property” now in force
Since 1955, it has been possible for Germany’s 16 states to register on a list of objects of national cultural importance artworks that are considered… Read More »Protecting national heritage or stifling the German Art Market?
The importation of goods into the European Union is subject to import VAT. The rate of import VAT varies from EU country to EU country.… Read More »Import VAT and the Free Movement of Goods within the European Union
HMRC have announced changes to the UK bonded warehousing regime. The purpose of the bonded warehousing regime (the technical phrase is “Customs Warehousing”) is to… Read More »Changes to the UK Bonded Warehousing Regime
The Customs Information Paper introducing changes to the temporary removal of goods from Customs Warehousing (see the article on this blog on Changes to the UK Bonded Warehousing Regime) refers to a previous Customs Information Paper (Ref: (10) 44 effective 18 June 2010). The Annex to that Customs Information Paper seeks to clarify certain procedures for the importation of works of art and antiques for display at galleries, fairs and exhibitions.
The second paragraph of the Annex reads: “Some art works currently being imported into the UK are described as “art installations” or “light installations”. These typically include some form of audio visual presentations or light display and current practice was to classify these installations according to their constituent parts and not as “art” in Chapter 97 of the Tariff”. This is a reference to HMRC’s inept argument that a video installation (e.g. by artist Bill Viola) or a light installation (e.g. by artist Dan Flavin) cannot be imported in the UK as an artwork simply because it is disassembled and crated for shipping. The fact that these art pieces are imported packed in boxes means, so argues HMRC, that they must be taxed as light bulbs, video screens and electric wires, because this is how these artworks appear to HMRC officials when they are wheeled through Customs. The sub-text is that HMRC officials are so devoid of natural intelligence that they cannot make the difference between an artwork by a world-famous artist (even when it is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity signed by the artist) and a bunch of wires. Tax should be levied, HMRC go on to say, at the rate applied to electrical and video apparatus, i.e. currently 20% instead of 5% for works of art. Customs duty should be levied too, as it applies to electrical and video equipment, not to works of art. This might have been mildly ridiculous, had HMRC not also argued that the higher rate of tax and duty should be applied not on the retail value of the electrical or video equipment (a few hundred pounds) but on the value declared by the importer being the value of an artwork by the artist (typically several hundred thousand pounds).Read More »The Importation of Video and Light Installations