Avex Pictures releases statement on export ban

As previously reported, Avex Pictures put a restriction in place that bans the sale of all the products they publish outside of Japan. Many anime fans in particular were not happy with this decision, seeing as Avex pictures is responsible for publishing tons of popular and well known titles which include YURI!!! on ICE, ONE PIECE, and Mr. Osomatsu.

A user on twitter reached out to Avex Pictures hoping to get a formal response on why they implemented this ban, shortly after the inquiring fan received a reply from their content sales and marketing department. According to the representative, due to unspecified problems with license rights these items were never supposed to be sold to people outside of Japan in the first place. The representative did note however, that they will try to acquire more rights to enable oversea sales again.

Fans who are still interested in obtaining products effected by this restriction can still purchase them through various proxy and middlemen services. The full statement from the Avex Pictures representative can be seen below.

Thank you for your continued support. Regarding the matter you have submitted, we provide the following response.

Due to the issue of license rights, the company [Avex Pictures] must make a distinction between products which can be sold overseas and those which cannot. We provide this information to retailers and e-commerce website operators, but there may be misunderstandings in classification among some outlets. Whenever such cases arise, we instruct them to make the necessary corrections.

We infer that the product that you have indicated is not able to be sold overseas because of this correction. This is not a case that the product is suddenly prohibited from being sold overseas, and we hope you will understand that it was never meant to be available, and that the dealer has only recently made this correction.

However, we appreciate the need for anime content overseas and will make an effort to be able to acquire more rights for overseas sales. We look forward to your continued support of our products.

Avex Pictures

(via MyAnimeList)

  • Comments

    • Soyeon

      does avex benefit in any way from this ban tho? or is it the studios that put pressure on them to do it


    • HyperMoot .

      “due to unspecified problems with license rights these items were never supposed to be sold to people outside of Japan in the first place” eeh? the moment when business laws become as decipherable as Maronite Christianism

    • Amy

      I guess this would be a good time to start a buying service. I’ve bought items this way but sometimes the fees can stack up if you’re not careful. Lol at the “it was never meant to be available” part

    • guest

      Hmm wonder if other studios will start following. Stupid distribution law.

    • Well we were never meant to support you blockheads either, instead good luck and much appreciation to your lovely competitors.

    • deepdark

      It’s like Avex hates money or something, jeez.

    • King of the Kats

      I guess Japan is the only place I know in my years of life that refuse to make money outside their kingdom lol. Mangas, animes, music etc. are loved by many!

      • yamakita

        On one hand, Japan desperately wants approval of Westerners. On the other, it wants to encourage piracy. It’s a little confusing.

      • Region specific sales are nothing new and it is definitely not a Japanese thing either. Just think about DVD region codes… but even before that, there were laws all around the world that restricted (well, or at least tried to do that) international sales.

    • rubiewhitt

      People will just torrent or stream it online as they always have. These licensors must want to avoid having to pay extra fees or tax to be able to ship overseas because no one hates money that much in Japan to do this.

    • Antonio C

      Dear Arama staff

      I sent you a tip almost one week ago with the entire email, It seems that nobody checks the mail.

      Thanks anyway…

      • yacchaitai

        sending tips is a waste of time

        • Antonio C

          I can see it…

    • マイケル・タンザー

      What kind of a nonsense distribution law is this?!?

    • Codi

      It is probably due to music rights of the OP/ED and instrumentals. Many early US releases of Gundam (among others) series suffered from the lack of original music from the anime from this very issue due to Bandai. Still, it is foolish that in this age of streaming services, that it wasn’t something already cleared and taken care of to begin with. But, they probably did not imagine/foresee westerners buying straight from Japan.

      • maguro part deux

        OK, so when they licensed the music for the anime, they wrote the licensing agreement for Japan only? Seems plausible.

    • Michele

      I’d really like to know what’s the issue with Amazon Japan and Avex Trax though.
      Why did they block everything?

    • xHadex

      Crappy anime get banned :D

    • Danielle Sly

      why can i still buy one piece dvds on amazon though.. or is ti just dvds that came from japan?

    • Moonfae88

      This…. This is why Korea is kicking their ass.