Guidelines - Movable Cultural Property Grants
- Objects situated inside Canada
- Objects situated outside Canada
- Private Sales
- Auction sales
- Conditions for Awarding of Grants
- Contact Us
Two of the major provisions of the Cultural Property Export and Import Act are the regulation of the export of certain classes of cultural property, and the authority for the Minister of Canadian Heritage to make funds available to assist designated institutions to purchase objects for which export permits have been refused, or which are located outside Canada and are related to the national heritage.
Movable Cultural Property Grants may be awarded to institutions or public authorities in Canada that have been "designated" by the Minister of Canadian Heritage as meeting the necessary standards to preserve cultural property and make it accessible to the public. Institutions and public authorities that are not already designated may submit an application for designation with their application for a Movable Cultural Property Grant. For more information on the requirements for designation, refer to the publication entitled Designation of Institutions and Public Authorities.
"the Minister may, out of moneys appropriated by Parliament for such purposes, make grants and loans to institutions and public authorities in Canada for the purchase of objects in respect of which export permits have been refused under the Act or for the purchase of cultural property situated outside Canada that is related to the national heritage."
Grants are available to assist designated institutions and public authorities to purchase objects located in Canada only if the cultural property in question is the subject of an application for a cultural property export permit that has been refused and where its "outstanding significance and national importance" has been confirmed on appeal by the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board. The Review Board may then establish a delay period of between two and six months during which the object is available for purchase within Canada.
When requesting a grant in the above circumstances, designated institutions and public authorities are required to explain how the cultural property is of importance to their particular collection or acquisition mandate. They are also encouraged to explain any local, provincial or regional considerations and any other pertinent factors in support of acquiring the cultural property.
Funds are also available to purchase cultural property that has been lost to Canada. Objects eligible for grants under such circumstances typically originated in Canada and were exported prior to September 6, 1977, when the Act was passed. Objects originating elsewhere may also be eligible. Such objects must have a strong association with Canadian history. It must be demonstrated that, if they are acquired by a Canadian institution, they will be an important element of the national heritage.
When requesting a grant for objects located outside Canada, designated institutions and public authorities are required to explain why the cultural property they wish to acquire is of importance to Canada's heritage and to their particular collection or acquisition mandate, including whether similar examples exist in their or other Canadian public collections and, if so, what differentiates the cultural property for which a grant is sought. They are also encouraged to explain any local, provincial or regional considerations and any other pertinent factors in support of acquiring the cultural property.
Before a Movable Cultural Property Grant will be recommended for approval, the applicant must provide satisfactory evidence that the proposed purchase price is reasonable. Applicants are expected to become familiar with the appropriate sectors of the international market in order to demonstrate that the purchase price cited in the application accurately reflects current market conditions. Comparisons should be made, for example, with prices realized at recent public and/or private sales of related objects. In some cases, the institution may wish to engage the services of an appraiser to assist it in negotiating a purchase price with the vendor.
Once a reasonable purchase price has been established, the applicant is expected to raise 50% or more of the purchase price from other sources before applying for a Movable Cultural Property Grant. Funding should therefore be sought from other levels of government and private subscriptions. Provincially–owned institutions are expected to demonstrate that the province is contributing to the purchase either through the institution's acquisition budget or separately. Funding is eligible solely towards the purchase price and excludes the following expenditures: applicable taxes, shipping, packing, recovery, conservation, research, display. Funding requests must be made in Canadian dollars. The application must specify the amount the applicant will contribute to the purchase.
In the case of a purchase from a private individual or a dealer, the institution should ensure that the lowest possible price has been negotiated.
Where the cultural property is the subject of a delay period established by the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board, the value appearing on the export permit is not necessarily fixed and the applicant is encouraged to negotiate a purchase price based on its own market research. As part of these negotiations, the applicant is encouraged to offer to make an application to the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board to have the property in question certified so that the vendor would be exempt from paying taxes on the capital gain realized by the sale to the institution.
In situations where an export delay period has been established, where the applicant and the vendor are unable to agree on a purchase price, and where an offer made by the applicant is not accepted, either party may request in writing, 30 days or more before the end of the delay period, that the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board determine the amount of a fair cash offer to purchase.
If a grant is being requested to facilitate a purchase at auction, the estimated purchase price should be justified in terms of the published pre–sale estimate, including the premium, and any available information about other recent sales of comparable objects. If the grant is recommended, it would be for an amount up to and not exceeding the amount requested in the application. If the grant is approved and the object is successfully purchased, the institution will be obliged to contribute the full amount it committed to in its application. The grant will correspond to the amount remaining after the institution's contribution has been factored in, but will not exceed the ceiling amount approved by the Minister of Canadian Heritage.
The Movable Cultural Property Program recommends to the Minister of Canadian Heritage whether grant requests should be approved. There are no deadlines for the submission of grant requests. For applicants requesting approval of funds to be able to bid at auction, it is recommended that the request be made as early as possible to maximize the chances that the recommendation and approval processes will be completed in advance of the auction. Application forms for Movable Cultural Property Grants are available online at:http://www.pch.gc.ca/pgm/bcm-mcp/desgntn/graapp-eng.cfm.
When a Movable Cultural Property Grant is awarded, the designated institution or public authority receiving the grant must agree:
to provide documentation demonstrating completion of purchase of the cultural property and the amount paid. This may include a copy of the cancelled cheque or other document that establishes proof of payment by the institution. Copies of invoices or statements marked "PAID" will not be accepted as proof of payment. Where the full amount of the grant is not used (eg. where payment is made in US dollars and the total purchase price in Canadian dollars turns out to be less than the amount cited in the grant application, due to a fluctuation in the exchange rate), the unused amount must be refunded to the Receiver General for Canada;
to publicly acknowledge the grant in the format prescribed by the Minister of Canadian Heritage;
that the cultural property shall be the sole property of the institution/public authority and will not be permanently disposed of within 25 years of the date of purchase, except to an institution or public authority that is, at the time of such disposition, designated by the Minister of Canadian Heritage under subsection 32(2) of the Cultural Property Export and Import Act for the purpose of receiving cultural property of that kind.
Additional information and application forms in hard copy may be obtained by contacting the Movable Cultural Property Program
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