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NEW Regulations on the Rosewood Trade will affect Music Products

premier-dread-rosewood_bcuCites summit moves to protect the world’s most trafficked wild product by placing all 300 species of the tree under trade restrictions

Many industry members would be aware of the recent decision by CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) with regard the rosewood species.

Key is that Indian Rosewood will be listed on the CITES list from Jan 2, 2017. What this means is that the movement across international borders of products containing Indian Rosewood will need to be accompanied by CITES permits issued at each point of supply (from supply of logs to wholesaler).

This does not apply to individual instruments but will certainly make life complicated for the movement of guitars in any number.

The Australian Music Association has been communicating with members and the Department of Environment to make more clear the immediate and future impact of this latest ruling. The Department has advised that it is preparing a comprehensive information resource for the industry.

It is also keen to have consultation with the industry and the Australian Music Association will organise this process, and contact members when they know more.

One supplier said; “Our own advice from government to date is vague so it is probably best practice to assume the full restrictions will apply from Jan 2 and work from there”.

The music products industry has been termed the innocent bystander in this situation, very little of the rosewood cut in the world goes towards guitars. Most is destined for China to be used in luxury furniture. But any industry involved with rosewood today is faced with the difficult task of ensuring its legality and complying with increasingly strict international regulation.

The ruling reflects a desperate need to stop the massive illegal operations that brought this on in the first place. The new regulation is a significant move towards reducing destructive illegal logging and international wildlife trafficking that harms forests and forest communities. But it is also monumental for the industry, which will now have to provide CITES permits for all commercial trade, imports, and exports of guitars and other instruments containing rosewood parts, including backs, sides, fretboard, bridge and binding.

Language on “non-commercial personal use” protects traveling musicians from officials seizing their instruments, but the new CITES listing marks a new era for instrument manufacturers.

The AMA will update members when more info comes to hand

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