Overeenkomst inzake de invoer van voorwerpen van opvoedkundige, wetenschappelijke of culturele aard
The Contracting States,
Considering that the free exchange of ideas and knowledge and, in general, the widest possible dissemination of the diverse forms of self-expression used by civilisations are vitally important both for intellectual progress and international understanding, and consequently for the maintenance of world peace;
Considering that this interchange is accomplished primarily by means of books, publications and educational, scientific and cultural materials;
Considering that the Constitution of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation urges co-operation between nations in all branches of intellectual activity, including “the exchange of publications, objects of artistic and scientific interest and other materials of information” and provides further that the Organisation shall “collaborate in the work of advancing the mutual knowledge and understanding of peoples, through all means of mass communication, and to that end recommend such international agreements as may be necessary to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image”;
Recognise that these aims will be effectively furthered by an international agreement facilitating the free flow of books, publications and educational, scientific and cultural materials; and
Have, therefore, agreed to the following provisions:—
The Contracting States undertake not to apply customs duties or other charges on, or in connexion with, the importation of—
Books, publications and documents, listed in annex A to this Agreement;
Educational, scientific and cultural materials, listed in annexes B, C, D and E to this Agreement;
which are the products of another Contracting State, subject to the conditions laid down in those annexes.
The provisions of paragraph 1 of this article shall not prevent any Contracting State from levying on imported materials—
Internal taxes or any other internal charges of any kind, imposed at the time of importation or subsequently, not exceeding those applied directly or indirectly to like domestic products;
Fees and charges, other than customs duties, imposed by governmental authorities on, or in connexion with, importation, limited in amount to the approximate cost of the services rendered, and representing neither an indirect protection to domestic products nor a taxation of imports for revenue purposes.
The Contracting States undertake to grant the necessary licences and/or foreign exchange for the importation of the following articles:—
Books and publications consigned to public libraries and collections and to the libraries and collections of public educational, research or cultural institutions;
Official government publications, that is, official, parliamentary and administrative documents published in their country of origin;
Books and publications of the United Nations or any of its specialised agencies;
Books and publications received by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation and distributed free of charge by it or under its supervision;
Publications intended to promote tourist travel outside the country of importation, sent and distributed free of charge;
Articles for the blind:
Books, publications and documents of all kinds in raised characters for the blind;
Other articles specially designed for the educational, scientific or cultural advancement of the blind, which are imported directly by institutions or organisations concerned with the welfare of the blind, approved by the competent authorities of the importing country for the purpose of duty-free entry of these types of articles.
The Contracting States which at any time apply quantitative restrictions and exchange control measures undertake to grant, as far as possible, foreign exchange and licences necessary for the importation of other educational, scientific or cultural materials, and particularly the materials referred to in the annexes to this Agreement.
The Contracting States undertake to give every possible facility to the importation of educational, scientific or cultural materials, which are imported exclusively for showing at a public exhibition approved by the competent authorities of the importing country and for subsequent re-exportation. These facilities shall include the granting of the necessary licences and exemption from customs duties and internal taxes and charges of all kinds payable on importation, other than fees and charges corresponding to the approximate cost of services rendered.
Nothing in this article shall prevent the authorities of an importing country from taking such steps as may be necessary to ensure that the materials in question shall be re-exported at the close of their exhibition.
The Contracting States undertake that they will as far as possible—
Continue their common efforts to promote by every means the free circulation of educational, scientific or cultural materials, and abolish or reduce any restrictions to that free circulation which are not referred to this Agreement;
Simplify the administrative procedure governing the importation of educational, scientific or cultural materials;
Facilitate the expeditious and safe customs clearance of educational, scientific or cultural materials.
Nothing in this Agreement shall affect the right of Contracting States to take measures, in conformity with their legislation, to prohibit or limit the importation, or the circulation after importation, of articles on grounds relating directly to national security, public order or public morals.
This Agreement shall not modify or affect the laws and regulations of any Contracting State or any of its international treaties, conventions, agreements or proclamations, with respect to copyright, trademarks or patents.
Subject to the provisions of any previous conventions to which the Contracting States may have subscribed for the settlement of disputes, the Contracting States undertake to have recourse to negotiations or conciliation, with a view to settlement of any disputes regarding the interpretation or the application of this Agreement.
In case of a dispute between Contracting States relating to the educational, scientific or cultural character of imported materials, the interested Parties may, by common agreement, refer it to the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation for an advisory opinion.
This Agreement, of which the English and French texts are equally authentic, shall bear to-day's date and remain open for signature by all Member States of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, all Member States of the United Nations and any non-member State to which an invitation may have been adressed by the Executive Board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation.
The Agreement shall be ratified on behalf of the signatory States in accordance with their respective constitutional procedure.
The instruments of ratification shall be deposited with the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
The States referred to in paragraph 1 of article IX may accept this Agreement from 22nd November, 1950. Acceptance shall become effective on the deposit of a formal instrument with the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
This Agreement shall come into force on the date on which the Secretary-General of the United Nations receives instruments of ratification or acceptance from ten States.
The States Parties to this Agreement on the date of its coming into force shall each take all the necessary measures for its fully effective operation within a period of six months after that date.
For States which may deposit their instruments of ratification or acceptance after the date of the Agreement coming into force, these measures shall be taken within a period of three months from the date of deposit.
Within one month of the expiration of the periods mentioned in paragraphs 1 and 2 of this article, the Contracting States to this Agreement shall submit a report to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation of the measures which they have taken for such fully effective operation.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation shall transmit this report to all signatory States to this Agreement and to the International Trade Organisation (provisionally, to its Interim Commission).
Any Contracting State may, at the time of signature or the deposit of its instrument of ratification or acceptance, or at any time thereafter, declare by notification adressed to the Secretary-General of the United Nations that this Agreement shall extend to all or any of the territories for the conduct of whose foreign relations that Contracting State is responsible.
Two years after the date of the coming into force of this Agreement, any Contracting State may, on its own behalf or on behalf of any of the territories for the conduct of whose foreign relations that Contracting State is responsible, denounce this Agreement by an instrument in writing deposited with the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
The denunciation shall take effect one year after the receipt of the instrument of denunciation.
The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall inform the States referred to in paragraph 1 of article IX, as well as the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation, and the International Trade Organisation (provisionally, its Interim Commission), of the deposit of all the instruments of ratification and acceptance provided for in articles IX and X, as well as of the notifications and denunciations provided for respectively in articles XIII and XIV.
At the request of one-third of the Contracting States to this Agreement, the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation shall place on the agenda on the next session of the General Conference of that Organisation the question of convoking a meeting for the revision of this Agreement.
Annexes A, B, C, D and E, as well as the Protocol annexed to this Agreement, are hereby made an integral part of this Agreement.
In accordance with Article 102 of the Charter of the United Nations, this Agreement shall be registered by the Secretary-General of the United Nations on the date of its coming into force.
In faith whereof the undersigned, duly authorised, have signed this Agreement on behalf of their respective Governments.
Done at Lake Success, New York, this twenty-second day of November, one thousand nine hundred and fifty, in a single copy, which shall remain deposited in the archives of the United Nations and certified true copies of which shall be delivered to all the States referred to in paragraph 1 of article IX, as well as to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation and to the International Trade Organisation (provisionally, to its Interim Commission).