Progress On CITES Rosewood Regulations

According to this article an agreement has been reached which could see musical instruments exempted from the CITES II environmental safeguards.

Assuming the proposal is accepted it won’t become law until September 2019 and we probably won’t know the exact definitions of “finished musical instruments”, “finished musical instrument parts” and “finished musical instrument accessories” until the next CITES meeting in May 2019. However if current definitions are anything to go by, “finished” will mean the rosewood has been machined/worked to a final product ie not raw lumber or milled blanks, so guitar necks/bridges/pins etc should all be fine.

Reading between the lines I assume the harvesting/processing of rosewood will still require CITES certificates, but it takes a level of bureaucracy and therefore associated cost out of the equation for retailers and private sellers. (For example a rosewood shipment from Allparts to the UK requires the following: export certificate from Japan, import certificate to America, export certificate from America and import certificate for UK. Each step has an associated cost in time and money.)

Let’s hope it goes through!

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