September 30th, 2010 – Dr. Hubert Lanz, president of the European Coin Dealer Association FENAP was able to make the Bavarian Ministry of Economic Affairs, Infrastructure, Transport and Technology to write an official letter to the US government in order to inform the officials about its concerns due to the planned import restrictions on Greek coins.
Here is the letter:
Request of Greece for import restrictions on Greek cultural property according to Art. 9 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property 1970
Dear Mrs. McHale,
Dr. Hubert Lanz, President of The Federation of European Professional Numismatic Associations, contacted us to inform us that Greece started proceedings under Art. 9 of the above mentioned UNESCO Convention requesting the United States to restrict the import of Greek cultural goods from the neolithic Era through the mid-eighteenth century.
The proposed restrictions (along for similar ones being considered for Italy) would negatively impact the legitimate numismatic trade between Germany and the United States of America and also people to people contacts between US and German citizens.
Apart from very few exceptions, no licence or permit is needed in Germany, neither for import to Germany nor for export from Germany of coins.
If the import of certain coins into the United States required an export licence granted by authorities of the export country in future, this requirement could not be fulfilled by German retailers. Legal trade would then hardly be possible between Germany and the United States.
In Germany there are around 100 auction houses, more than 500 retailers and estimated more than a half million collectors of old coins. Moreover, a considerable number of them are located in Munich, and are engaged in trade with customers the United States.
Thank you for your consideration.