For use of the media
not an official document.
Country proposals on wildlife trade rules
posted on CITES website
17 January 2007, Geneva – The Secretariat of the Convention
on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and
Flora (CITES) has received some 40 proposals from member countries
to adjust the rules governing trade in wildlife species. These
proposals have just been
posted on the CITES website (www.cites.org) in the language in
which they were received.
Countries will vote to accept, reject or modify these proposals
for amending the CITES Appendices at a conference to be held in
The Hague, the Netherlands, from 3 to 15 June 2007. CITES Appendix
II lists species that are at risk and whose import and export
are controlled through a permit system and Appendix I lists species
that are endangered and that may not be commercially traded.
The proposals may be fewer this time than at previous conferences
but they confirm growing interest in commercially valuable timber
and marine species. Countries have proposed the inclusion in the
appendices of precious timbers, two species of sharks (spiny dogfish
and porbeagle shark), the Brazilian population of spiny lobster,
eels, sawfish and precious red corals.
Amongst the species targeted at the forthcoming meeting also
feature the black caiman, the bobcat, several ornamental and medicinal
plants and CITES’s well-known flagship species: the elephant.
The proposals on the African elephant reflect opposing views
on how to improve the conservation and sustainable use of this
species. Indeed, Botswana and Namibia have now submitted a proposal
to maintain elephant populations of Botswana, Namibia, South Africa
and Zimbabwe in Appendix II, and the United Republic of Tanzania
is recommending that their elephant populations be transferred
from Appendix I to Appendix II. They argue that trade in ivory
of their elephant populations is sustainable and a valuable instrument
of conservation. On the contrary, Kenya and Mali are recommending
a trade ban in raw or worked ivory for a period of 20 years. They
argue that allowing any trade in ivory will increase the killing
The CITES Secretariat will publish its preliminary technical
and scientific assessment of the proposals, together with its
preliminary recommendations, at the end of February.
Note to journalists: The proposals can be viewed
at www.cites.org. For more information, contact Juan-Carlos Vasquez
at +41-22-917-8156 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or Michael Williams
at +41-79-409-1528 (cell), +41-22-917-8242 (office), or email@example.com.
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