Whitehall officials overseeing CITES enforcement have removed guidelines from their website after conceding that they are confusing.
Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency, the government department charged with issuing licences for the sale of works of art containing the parts of endangered species, will now review their method of explaining new European guidelines regarding the interpretation of the antiques derogation.
While the new rules, detailed in last week's ATG, remain unchanged, the department has conceded their presentation was imperfect. A notice on their website now reads: "We have noticed that certain traders have found our guidance on the changes to how the 'worked items derogation' is implemented to be confusing and in some cases misleading.
"We have agreed with our policy colleagues in Defra that the best way forward is to remove the guidance published on 9 May, and publish revised guidance as soon as possible. In the interim, you are reminded that the derogation has not changed, and if you believe that it can be met then it is not necessary to obtain an EC Certificate to allow commercial use."