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Until now, with the exception of two specific measures for Iraq and Syria, there has been no EU legislation covering the import of cultural goods from non-EU countries entering the EU. By ensuring that these imports are subject to uniform controls along all EU external borders, the new regulation aims to prevent the introduction, import and storage in the EU of cultural goods illegally removed from a third country, thereby protecting cultural heritage and combatting illegal trade, in particular where ...

The highlights of the October II plenary session were the debate on the conclusions of the European Council meeting on 17 and 18 October 2018 and the presentation of the European Commission’s 2019 work programme, the last of the current legislature. Parliament also held debates on the use of Facebook users' data by Cambridge Analytica and its impact on data protection, and the Cum-Ex trading scandal. The series of debates on the Future of Europe continued, this time with Klaus Iohannis, President ...

Import of cultural goods

Briefing 19-12-2017

This note seeks to provide an initial analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the European Commission's impact assessment (IA) accompanying the above proposal, adopted on 13 July 2017 and now under discussion in Parliament and Council. The proposal aims to prevent the import and storage in the EU of cultural goods illicitly exported from a third country, in order to reduce trafficking in cultural goods, combat terrorism financing and protect cultural heritage, especially archaeological objects ...

Works of art and cultural goods looted in armed conflicts or wars usually travel across several borders when they are sold. The cross-border character of looted art creates legal challenges for restitution claims as they often concern various national jurisdictions, with differing rules, as well as fragmented and insufficiently defined legal requirements in international and European legal instruments. Against this background, this European Added Value Assessment identifies weaknesses in the existing ...

Illicit trade in cultural goods

Briefing 25-07-2017

Illicit trade (or trafficking) in cultural goods is defined by the European Commission as the 'illicit import, export and transfer of ownership of cultural property, i.e. items being of importance for archaeology, prehistory, history, literature, art or science' and is characterised as ranging 'from theft from cultural heritage institutions or private collections, through looting of archaeological sites to the displacement of artefacts due to war'. The European Commission points out that trafficking ...

This study was commissioned and supervised by the European Parliament's Policy Department for Citizens' Rights and Constitutional Affairs at the request of the JURI Committee. Restitution of art looted during past and present armed conflicts is a major issue for our societies. Claiming restitution before courts – often in foreign States – has proven to be difficult. That is why parties turn more and more to dispute resolution means alternative to court litigation. This study examines the legal difficulties ...

This note seeks to provide an initial analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of the European Commission's Impact Assessment accompanying its proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the return of cultural objects unlawfully removed from the territory of a Member State (COM (2013) 311 final) (recast), submitted on 30 May, 2013. It analyses whether the principal criteria laid down in the Commission’s own Impact Assessment Guidelines, as well as additional factors ...

Following the European Commission’s launching of a Recast proposal for Directive 93/7/EEC, which was adopted to ensure the return of cultural goods classified as “national treasures possessing artistic, historic or archaeological value”, the Committee on Culture and Education (CULT) of the European Parliament draw up a report on ‘Return of Unlawfully-Removed Cultural Objects’. Due to its complicated and legal-technical nature, CULT organised a workshop on the subject to promote debate between experts ...

Illegal trafficking of cultural objects is one of the most profitable of criminal activities. The European Union, with its border-free internal market and substantial cultural and historical heritage, is considered to be particularly affected by such illegal trade.