Post Number: 4122
|Posted on Tuesday, July 08, 2014 - 1:25 pm: |
I recently contacted the UK Musicians Union about the implications of CITES on travelling abroad with instruments which include exotic woods that may have restrictions on their movements. I was curious because there is a possibility of some international festival dates for me next year and I want to be sure I can travel to and from here with my alembic.
Here was the response taken directly from the email I got in response.
Do you have Ivory or Brazilian Rosewood, Abalone or other materials built into your instrument?
Are you travelling overseas with your instrument?
If so, there are certain precautions you should take to protect your instrument, especially if travelling to the USA .
The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) [http://www.cites.org/] has for some time now been concerned with the illegal trade of endangered flora and fauna such as Brazilian Rosewood, African Ivory, Mother of Pearl and Abalone to name but a few. These species have for many years been used in instrument manufacture.
The US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) have introduced regulations that allow for instruments with certain endangered species to be seized by authorities when musicians have been entering or leaving the country when working.
This has raised grave concerns for the American Federation of Musicians (AFM) and the American League of Orchestras who have been lobbying hard for an exemption for musicians.
Thanks to their efforts, the USFWS issued an amended order making it possible to travel with instruments made, sold or transferred before February 2014.
The key thing here is that while this exemption now exists you still need to be able to prove purchase, transfer details of the instrument and have supporting documentation.
You can read the original order and the amendment here [http://fws.gov/policy/do210.html]
CITES has recommended the use of an ‘Instrument Passport’ which, when drawn up and approved, will identify when the instrument was bought, and should include accompanying purchase/transfer documentation and identifying photos of the instrument.
The MU has discussed this issue with International Federation of Musicians (FIM) and employers across Europe. A joint letter is being drawn up asking that clear concise information from CITES and the US Government be issued as to how musicians can obtain these 'passports'.
We have also spoken to the AFM and they advise having both a permit from your home country and a permit for the country to which you are travelling. If you are travelling to the US for a single visit, a permit may be obtained here [http://www.fws.gov/international/permits/by-activity/musical-instruments.html]
The MU contacted the UK authorities over this issue. We have been advised that until such time as the internationally recognised ‘instrument passport’ is available, UK musicians can apply for a CITES Permit as an individual or a group here [http://www.defra.gov.uk/ahvla-en/category/forms/cites/]
The form you require is FED0172. They have confirmed this form will be recognised by overseas authorities and provide you with the protection you require. However, we would advise that if you have any concerns you do contact them directly. They are best placed to answer any questions you may have.
The Union is working with other international musicians unions and employers on your behalf to try to make this process easier and more transparent for musicians. We will update this information as necessary.
(Message edited by jazzyvee on July 08, 2014)
Post Number: 1210
|Posted on Tuesday, July 08, 2014 - 1:41 pm: |
"The US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) have introduced regulations that allow for instruments with certain endangered species to be seized by authorities when musicians have been entering or leaving the country when working."
Good old USA political machine in action.
Over regulation is the bane of our society . . . .
Post Number: 446
|Posted on Tuesday, July 08, 2014 - 11:12 pm: |
The heart is in the right place though, so you can't completely fault them; just the heavy-handedness...Tony
Post Number: 1212
|Posted on Wednesday, July 09, 2014 - 3:26 am: |
Tony, you are correct.
Post Number: 262
|Posted on Wednesday, July 09, 2014 - 8:33 am: |
Post Number: 1213
|Posted on Wednesday, July 09, 2014 - 11:07 am: |
I have requested that a Moderator retract my politically slanted post (#1210) above. I failed at properly censoring myself and apologize; especially to the Wickersham/ Thomas families. I knew when I was typing that I was crossing a boundary that has been defined in the past and I shouldn't have clicked the post button.
This Forum and members are a very special group and not an appropriate platform for political dissent.
Although I am sure the NSA will still regard me as a threat! :-D
Post Number: 4168
|Posted on Sunday, August 03, 2014 - 3:04 pm: |
Santana's guitar tech talks a little about CITES in this rig rundown.
Post Number: 2232
|Posted on Monday, August 04, 2014 - 12:47 am: |
Does this applies to older instruments before the statute was instigated?
It's closing the barn door after the horse has bolted!
Post Number: 2047
|Posted on Monday, August 04, 2014 - 7:18 am: |
For the US citizens you have to apply for special import/export of pre-CITES instruments. It can take a couple of months to get approval. You also need to find out the criteria from the appropriate government body in each country you will be visiting and apply through their process. The US government site talks about a musical instrument passport to make it easier on touring musicians but I didn't follow up on the outcome.