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CITES Secretariat Publishes Recommendations on Listing Proposals

CITES11 February 2013: The Secretariat of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) published its recommendations on the proposals to amend the Appendices of the Convention. The Secretariat consulted bodies concerned with the conservation and sustainable use of marine species and timber species about these proposals, including the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), which convened an Expert Advisory Panel to examine the proposals related to commercially-exploited aquatic species in detail. 

The 70 proposals, submitted by 55 States, concern the polar bear, African elephant, white rhinoceros, vicuna, turtles, frogs, crocodiles, several shark species, the manta ray, tropical timbers, and ornamental and medicinal plants, among other animal and plant species.

On the proposal to transfer populations of vicuna in Ecuador from Appendix I to Appendix II, the Secretariat wrote that the proposal should be adopted with an amendment, noting that an export quota or other special measure should have been an integral part of this proposal.

On the proposal to transfer polar bears from Appendix II to Appendix I, the Secretariat recommended that such a proposal be rejected, noting that this listing would not appear to be a measure proportionate to the anticipated risk to the species at this time.

In recommending to reject the proposal to amend the annotation for the African elephant, the Secretariat noted that the annotations related to the African elephant are no longer solely governed by the listing criteria or the existing guidance on annotations, but are the result of protracted, difficult negotiations and compromises, and not warranted at a time when all African countries are uniting to address the poaching issue.

On the proposal to include the porbeagle shark under Appendix II, the Secretariat recommends its adoption, citing strong demand in international trade. [CITES Press Release] [CITES Secretariat Recommendations on List of Proposals to Amend Appendices]