Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Construction and repair of Classical Guitar and related instruments
Mr.Rain
Posts: 75
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 4:43 pm
Location: Dublin

Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Mr.Rain » Sun Jun 11, 2017 9:39 am

Hi All,

Due to work I am going to spend a long season in Switzerland (at least 3-12months).

I have a question that may sound stupid or redundant but I am quite lost and would thank help about it

I have a 2017 BR made guitar, with a Cites Cert, the builder got the cites papers(i also have the bill), on the document the following things are stated:

-it was generated by the Spanish Cites authority
-the doc is valid only for the UE (for commercial activities/selling the item by the builder)
-the wood is dalbergia nigra from an unknown source but acquired before 1982/introduced in the EU before 1984


This is the doc (sorry it is in Spanish)
https://goo.gl/photos/JmxBL63nMa2K6Ts89


The builder of this guitar told me he is lost about the import permission or other docs needed (they imported guitar with BR before but thru a shop and eventually the shop stopped buying stuff with BR...)

I have a friend who traveled to Basel for a guitar seminary, apart of the Cites (in this case generated by the Brazilian authorities) he has other doc a "certificate of origin"(again a Brazilian doc) that states that the wood on his guitar is older than 100 years Rio, he never had any issues (he thinks mainly because of that doc)

Does anybody knows what i would need to get the guitar legally into the country?
Obviously I would prefer to take it with me rather than leaving it on storage or trying to sell it (inside of the EU)...

Cheers! :bye:

Rasputin
Posts: 420
Joined: Fri May 12, 2017 12:25 pm

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Rasputin » Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:06 am

I think the best thing you can do is get in touch with Swiss customs (contact details on the CITES page).

I would be surprised if Switzerland had stricter rules than the EU or did not recognise a certificate issued by the Spanish authority, but there's only one way to be sure.

simonm
Amateur luthier
Posts: 6307
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2009 10:22 am
Location: Germany, Würzburg.

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by simonm » Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:19 am

Contact the Swiss customs and ask. They are sure to be efficient. I suspect there will be no issue as you are not selling the guitar, you are merely bringing a documented personal possession with you.

Mr.Rain
Posts: 75
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 4:43 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Mr.Rain » Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:26 am

Rasputin wrote:
Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:06 am
I think the best thing you can do is get in touch with Swiss customs (contact details on the CITES page).

I would be surprised if Switzerland had stricter rules than the EU or did not recognise a certificate issued by the Spanish authority, but there's only one way to be sure.

I called last week, will call again the next one and try to get a clear answer :chaud:

Thanks :)
Last edited by Mr.Rain on Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:29 am, edited 1 time in total.

Mr.Rain
Posts: 75
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 4:43 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Mr.Rain » Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:28 am

simonm wrote:
Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:19 am
Contact the Swiss customs and ask. They are sure to be efficient. I suspect there will be no issue as you are not selling the guitar, you are merely bringing a documented personal possession with you.

I also called the customs, they told me literally to "call the USA embassy and ask them" ( They thought my french was "american" :lol: )

Anyway :merci:

Rasputin
Posts: 420
Joined: Fri May 12, 2017 12:25 pm

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Rasputin » Sun Jun 11, 2017 12:58 pm

simonm wrote:
Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:19 am
Contact the Swiss customs and ask. They are sure to be efficient.
When national stereotypes let you down...

Rasputin
Posts: 420
Joined: Fri May 12, 2017 12:25 pm

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Rasputin » Sun Jun 11, 2017 1:18 pm

Mr.Rain wrote:
Sun Jun 11, 2017 10:28 am
I also called the customs, they told me literally to "call the USA embassy and ask them" ( They thought my french was "american" :lol: )
There's an email address on that CITES page.

Switzerland is within the Schengen area so the chances of you actually being stopped at customs are pretty remote, especially if you are going by car. I have been through the France / Switzerland and Italy / Switzerland borders any number of times and have never been pulled over - you just crawl through a kind of inspection area then unless they flag you down you are through and on your way.

Switzerland is also an EFTA country so is subject to Brussels law in some respects, but from a quick look at the EEA agreement these do not include the EU Regulation giving effect to the CITES convention.

Rasputin
Posts: 420
Joined: Fri May 12, 2017 12:25 pm

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Rasputin » Sun Jun 11, 2017 1:23 pm

Wait there's more - you can see the requirements at https://www.blv.admin.ch/blv/en/home/im ... er-eu.html (there's an English version but no Spanish version). It looks as though if you are going to do it by the book you need a Spanish export certificate and a Swiss import certificate. You may also be able to get a Spanish musical instrument passport - but you can't get a Swiss one unless you live in Switzerland.

I have a similar dilemma over taking a guitar to SE Asia. I don't think mine is Brazilian rosewood but I couldn't prove it. I think I am just going to buy another one out there.

simonm
Amateur luthier
Posts: 6307
Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2009 10:22 am
Location: Germany, Würzburg.

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by simonm » Sun Jun 11, 2017 4:06 pm

Actually, we are forgetting something important. The magic number 10kg. So long as the guitar is less than 10kg mostly no-one is going to be bothered about musical instruments that are not being moved about for commercial purposes. You are well covered by the papers you have.

Rasputin
Posts: 420
Joined: Fri May 12, 2017 12:25 pm

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Rasputin » Sun Jun 11, 2017 4:24 pm

I don't think the 10kg exemption applies to Brazilian - this from the Swiss authority's site:

"New requirements for the import and export of instruments made of wood

At the last Conference of the Parties to CITES, new types of wood were included in the CITES Appendices and are therefore now considered to be protected species. Imports and exports of instruments made of the listed species of wood must therefore be accompanied by a CITES certificate.

Exceptions: No CITES documents are required for non-commercial imports and exports of up to max. 10 kg per consignment, provided the following newly listed species of wood in Annex II CITES are involved: Dalbergia spp (does not apply to Dalbergia nigra, Dalbergia cochinchinensis and the Mexican populations of Dalberiga spp.) and Guibourtia species (Boubinga)."

Rasputin
Posts: 420
Joined: Fri May 12, 2017 12:25 pm

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Rasputin » Sun Jun 11, 2017 4:26 pm

Not that I think the OP is likely to have a real problem... but the trouble is you don't know, and if your favourite guitar is impounded, it's a minor catastrophe.

Mr.Rain
Posts: 75
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 4:43 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Mr.Rain » Sun Jun 11, 2017 4:34 pm

Rasputin wrote:
Sun Jun 11, 2017 1:18 pm

There's an email address on that CITES page..
I already sent an email with a copy of the cites cert I have, will have to wait and see..

Will call again next week, I wouldn't dare trying to get it into the country unless I get written confirmaron (do not want to risk myself to a up to"100k" fine)

Mr.Rain
Posts: 75
Joined: Mon Dec 19, 2016 4:43 pm
Location: Dublin

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by Mr.Rain » Mon Jun 12, 2017 1:14 pm

i have an update from the cites office:

"
You need an import permit and you have to present the guitar at an CITES-control.

I hereby send you the link to our homepage where you can find the application form for an import permit:

https://www.blv.admin.ch/blv/en/home/im ... aaten.html

(scroll down to the bottom: “more information → Species conservation → Import permit application CITES”)



When you go back you have to apply for an export permit under the following link:

https://www.blv.admin.ch/blv/en/home/im ... dukte.html



The alternative would be a musical instrument certificate but I don’t know if in Spain this facilitation for musicians exists. Have a look here and then ask the management authority in Spain if they have something similar:

https://www.blv.admin.ch/blv/en/home/ge ... mente.html



Best regards"

astro64
Posts: 642
Joined: Sat Aug 06, 2016 7:43 pm
Location: American Southwest

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by astro64 » Mon Jun 12, 2017 4:31 pm

Seems like it was a bad idea to ask....

User avatar
guitarrista
Posts: 934
Joined: Sat Jan 21, 2012 7:00 am
Location: Victoria, BC, Canada

Re: Getting a Brazilian Rosewood guitar in Switzerland

Post by guitarrista » Mon Jun 12, 2017 5:57 pm

Well did you look through the cites.es website? I am assuming you are in Spain (you don't really say it).

Here is their Information for Private Individuals page where they state that for movement inside the EU (this is what applies to you, right?) you need a CITES EU Certificate for Annex A species (such as Brazilian rosewood-containing guitar).

Here is the EU CITES Certificate page with the explanations a and a link to the application form.

They focus a lot on live animals etc., but in your case it should be pretty straight forward since you are only travelling non-commercially, you own the guitar, and you have a certificate showing it was made with pre-convention Brazilian rosewood (this is what the certificate you linked to is about).

All application forms are here.

Potentially there are two certificates that may apply - the personal ownership certificate, and the EU CITES certificate. I know they state it is the EU CITES certificate you need, but since they seem to have focused so much on live animals and exotic pets and there is no mention of musical instruments, it does not hurt to inquire as they may not have considered how this applies to a guitar.

In any case it should be pretty easy to get a certificate given your circumstances. I'd say both the personal ownership certificate and the EU CITES certificate could work from the point of view of Swiss authorities as an equivalent-to musical instrument certificate.

EDIT: IT was pointed out that Switzerland is not in the EU and that the person actually is in Ireland, so see my later posts :-)
Last edited by guitarrista on Mon Jun 12, 2017 7:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Konstantin
--
1982 Anselmo Solar Gonzalez

Return to “Luthiers”