Decisions of the Conference of the Parties
At each of its meetings, the Conference of the Parties to CITES considers
problems of implementation of the Convention and its effectiveness. The
results of its deliberations are in the form of recommendations (Article
XI, paragraph 3) that are recorded either in Resolutions
or in Decisions of the Conference of the Parties.
The Resolutions are generally intended to provide long-standing guidance.
The Decisions, however are of a different nature. Typically they contain
instructions to a specific committee or to the Secretariat. This means
that they are to be implemented, often by a specified time, and then become
out of date.
The Decisions of the Conference of the Parties did not exist as a separate
series of recommendations until the ninth meeting of the Conference of
the Parties. The first list of Decisions, presented for adoption at that
meeting, was compiled from all of the recommendations that had previously
been adopted but had not been recorded in Resolutions, and from instructions
that had been included in Resolutions but had not yet been implemented.
The aim was to make these texts more accessible by compiling them in a
A document containing all valid Decisions is compiled by the Secretariat
after each meeting of the Conference of the Parties [see Resolution Conf.
4.6 (Rev. CoP15), second DIRECTS, paragraph b), and the list
of Decisions in effect]. Decisions that have been implemented or that
have become redundant are deleted by the Secretariat.
In 2003, the Secretariat introduced a system of numbering for Decisions
equivalent to that used for Resolutions. Thus all Decisions adopted at
the 15th meeting of the Conference of the Parties begin with the number
15. Decisions that were adopted at previous meetings and that remain in
effect have been included in the list of Decisions in effect with the
number that was originally given to them. Decisions that were revised
at the 15th meeting of the Conference have retained their original number
but with the addition of "(Rev. CoP15)".
Decisions that are in effect after the 15th meeting of the Conference
of the Parties are also available here in Word
and PDF format.