Geneva, 10 August 2001
National Legislation Project
Implementation of Decision 11.19
1. At its 11th meeting (Gigiri, 2000), the Conference of the Parties adopted Decision 11.19, which concerns Parties whose national legislation was reviewed in Phase 1 or 2 of the National Legislation Project and is believed generally not to meet one or more of the requirements for implementation of CITES (Categories 2 and 3), and that do not have high volumes of international trade in specimens of CITES-listed species, as stated in Decisions 10.19 to 10.23 adopted at the 10th meeting in Harare (1997).
2. The following 76 Parties have been identified as the Parties concerned under Decisions 10.19 to 10.23:
a) Forty-five Parties in Category 2: Bangladesh, Benin, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chile, China, Congo, Ecuador, El Salvador, Equatorial Guinea, Eritrea, Estonia, Gambia, Greece, Guinea, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Israel, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Malaysia, Mauritius, Monaco, Namibia, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Philippines, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sudan, Suriname, Togo, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Venezuela and Zambia;
b) Thirty-one Parties in Category 3: Algeria, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia, Brunei-Darussalam, Burundi, Central African Republic, Chad, Comoros, Côte d'Ivoire, Cyprus, Djibouti, Gabon, Ghana, Guinea-Bissau, Jordan, Liberia, Mali, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Niger, Pakistan, Rwanda, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Sri Lanka, Uganda and United Arab Emirates.
3. These Parties should take all necessary measures to enact national legislation for the implementation of CITES and to ensure that this legislation will be in effect no later than 30 days before the 46th meeting of the Standing Committee, which will be held in Geneva, Switzerland, from 11 to 15 March 2002.
4. The Parties concerned should report to the Secretariat any progress made in this regard no later than six months before the 46th meeting of the Standing Committee, e.g. by 11 September 2001.
5. Parties that are preparing national legislation to fulfil the requirements established by the text of the Convention may request technical assistance from the Secretariat.
6. Each Party, of course, decides how best to incorporate the requirements listed in paragraph 11 below in its legislation, in accordance with its constitution and other components of its legal system.
7. The legislative analyses of the above-mentioned countries were prepared during Phases 1 and 2 of the National Legislation Project. Since that time, the Secretariat has raised concern about the inability of these Parties to implement and enforce the Convention because of their failure to adopt the necessary legislation.
8. The inadequacy of national legislation has repeatedly been brought to the attention of the Management Authorities of the Parties concerned, which have been aware since the 10th meeting of the Conference of the Parties, in June 1997, or earlier, that their countries might be the subject of a recommendation to suspend trade in specimens of CITES-listed species.
9. It is unclear why so many Parties to CITES have not adopted legislation to implement the Convention or have enacted legislation that is limited to certain aspects of the Convention. However, these findings show clearly that the majority of Parties still need to adopt or strengthen their legislative, regulatory and institutional measures to implement the Convention adequately.
10. For now, a majority of Parties rely on their general wildlife legislation, and sometimes on Customs legislation or foreign-trade legislation, to control trade in specimens of CITES-listed species. The use of such legislation can give rise to a variety of problems. Existing sectoral legislation is rarely suited to the specific requirements of the Convention, especially if such legislation was adopted before CITES entered into force in the country concerned (as is often the case). Most wildlife laws are limited in scope and only cover certain categories of species, products or operations.
11. A clear and strong legislative basis is essential for Parties to implement the Convention and the Resolutions of the Conference of the Parties. Such legislation must, at a minimum, cover the four domestic measures that Parties are expected to have implemented in accordance with Articles II (4), VIII (1) and IX as well as Resolution Conf. 8.4.
12. These requirements are: to designate Management and Scientific Authorities; to prohibit trade in specimens in violation of the Convention; to penalize prohibited trade; and to provide for the confiscation of unlawfully traded or possessed specimens.
13. Parties have an obligation to apply the controls laid down by the Convention to all species listed in Appendices I, II and III, except those with respect to which they have entered a reservation. Parties have no discretion in this regard. A failure to make domestic legislation applicable to all CITES-listed species, except those covered by a reservation, therefore constitutes a violation of the Convention.
14. Unless the Secretariat is satisfied 30 days before the 46th meeting of the Standing Committee, that adequate legislation has entered into force or is expected to enter into force, it will be unable to report any progress to the Standing Committee.
15. If such were the case, the Standing Committee, at its 46th meeting, shall consider appropriate measures, which may include the recommendation of restrictions on the commercial trade in specimens of CITES-listed species to or from Parties with inadequate legislation.
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