The Florence Agreement Program

UNESCO experts meeting in Florence (It. Firenze), Italy in the early 1950s adopted the terms of an international agreement to promote international understanding and peace by lowering barriers to the exchange of cultural, scientific and educational materials, most importantly by waiving tariffs on such materials. The agreement covers diverse categories: books and other printed materials, art and museum pieces, tourism materials, audiovisual materials and the like. Annex D of the agreement covers scientific instruments and apparatus. Full Text of the Florence Agreement

The United States became a full party to the agreement when it enacted implementing legislation in 1966. The legislation provides that Annex D scientific instruments may be entered free of duty into the United States only if the Secretary of Commerce first finds that a scientifically equivalent instrument is not being manufactured domestically. By delegation from the Secretary, the director of the Statutory Import Programs Staff is responsible for making and publishing the required findings.

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