Friday 12 December 2014

Germany plans to Tighten Regulation of Art and Antiquities Trade

Alison Smale, 'Germany Plans to Tighten Regulation of Art and Antiquities Trade', New York Times Art Beat December 11, 2014
Ms. Grütters said she would propose a new law before next summer “that will ring in a long overdue change in paradigm.” Germany’s current law regulating the trade in art and antiquities has long been seen as lax when compared with those of other Western countries. “In the future, anyone who imports antiquities into Germany will need for each piece a valid export permit from the land of origin, which is to be presented when the object enters the country,” she said. Tighter restrictions would also apply to the sale of art and antiquities, she said. Clear legal limits would determine whether an object has sufficient provenance information. “In this way we want to guarantee that the trade in antiquities is restricted to objects with a clear and legal origin. In addition, we are working on a new legal regulation that would make it simpler to return cultural objects which have been illegally exported” from their countries of origin, Ms. Grütters said.
Oh ho ho... "She said she would also ask the cultural officials in all 16 German states to have museums and other cultural institutions examine their collections for dubious antiquities and other objects in the same way they already do for works suspected of having been stolen, confiscated or sold cheaply and under duress during the Nazi era. Dealers and collectors will also be encouraged to examine their collections". They'll love that...

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