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CITES Receives National Ivory Action Plans and Recommends Suspension of Trade with Guinea

CITES16 May 2013: The Secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) announced that it has received National Ivory Action Plans from China, Kenya, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, Uganda, Tanzania and Viet Nam, the first group of countries identified as primary source, transit and import countries affected by illegal trade in ivory.

The 16th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CITES (CoP16) also identified two additional groups of countries that need to adopt measures in the near future. One group (Cameroon, the Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gabon, Mozambique and Nigeria) will need to develop and start implementing similar National Ivory Action Plans during 2013. The second (Angola, Cambodia, Japan, the Lao People's Democratic Republic, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates) will have to clarify to the Secretariat how they control trade in ivory.

In March 2012, the CITES Standing Committee requested the plans from the first group in response to the rise in elephant killings based on statistics produced by the CITES programme for Monitoring the Illegal Killing of Elephants (MIKE) and the Elephant Trade Information System (ETIS). This group is requested to take urgent measures to implement the plans by July 2014, when the CITES Standing Committee will review their implementation, which John Scanlon, CITES Secretary-General, underscored is critical to curbing illegal wildlife trade. In July 2014, the Secretariat will provide the Standing Committee with its evaluation of the activities conducted by each country, based on field missions, and recommend potential further measures to intensify efforts in critical areas.

The CITES Secretariat, today, has also informed  all parties that the Standing Committee recommends that all parties suspend commercial trade in specimens of CITES-listed species with Guinea until further notice, in light of concerns regarding illegal trade in CITES-listed species involving the country and significant problems identified in the implementation of the Convention. [CITES Press Release] [CITES Notification to the Parties]