Protection of Cultural Objects on Loan Scheme

Now open for applications

The Protection of Cultural Objects on Loan Scheme (the scheme) is now open for applications.

About the scheme

The scheme provides legal protection for cultural objects on loan from overseas lenders for temporary public exhibition in Australia.

It limits the circumstances in which lenders, exhibiting institutions, exhibition facilitators and people working for them can lose ownership, physical possession, custody or control of objects while on loan to an approved Australian institution. This protection is often referred to as 'immunity from seizure and suit'.

Eligible Australian borrowing institutions seeking to apply for approval under the scheme are required to demonstrate that they have the necessary expertise, rigor, capacity and resources to meet the responsibilities established by the scheme. Once approved, objects that are imported by the institution, for temporary public exhibition in Australia, will automatically be protected. Institutions are approved for a period of up to five years. Objects that are imported for exhibition will be protected for up to two years from the date of importation into Australia.

How to apply

Eligible borrowing institutions can apply by reading the scheme guidelines and completing the application form on the Guidelines and application page.

Institutions approved under the Protection of Cultural Objects on Loan Act 2013 are listed on the Approved borrowing institutions page.

Background to the scheme

Following concern from the collections sector about the ability of Australian collecting institutions to compete for international loans, the Australian Government released a discussion paper in 2011 for public consultation on the issue of immunity from seizure. Responses to the discussion paper, from national, state and territory collecting institutions and governments, individuals and overseas institutions demonstrated strong support for the introduction of Commonwealth legislation providing protection for loans. This consultation resulted in the creation of the Protection of Cultural Objects on Loan Act 2013 and the Protection of Cultural Objects on Loan Regulation 2014.



For information regarding the scheme, please contact:

The Program Officer
Protection of Cultural Objects on Loan Scheme
Ministry for the Arts
4 National Circuit, Barton ACT 2600
Phone: 02 6141 4936