News 12 April 2018

Ecuador requests import restriction from US over cultural property

The government of Ecuador has asked the US Department of State for an import restriction on cultural property, in particular ‘archaeological and/or ethnological materials representing Ecuador’s cultural patrimony from the pre-Columbian through Republican periods.’ The request was made under article 9 of the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property.

Protection is sought not just for archaeological materials but for paintings and sculpture over 100 years old, Colonial and Republican period coins, and other ethnological materials over 50 years old, such as manuscripts and tools and utensils, as well as ‘certain works by modern artists’.

The US is a major market for cultural property from Ecuador, as are Germany, France and Spain.


The Notice in the Federal Register dated 4 April 2018 can be found here: