Fact Box: CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species)
CITES concludes, eight nations escape sanctions
The 16th meeting of the Conference of Parties to CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species), concluded in Bangkok, Thailand, after granting better protection to hundreds of threatened animal and plant species.
The eight countries accused of failing to do enough to tackle the illegal trade in elephant ivory escaped sanctions. The conference found that Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda, Malaysia, the Philippines and Vietnam, and top markets China and Thailand are making insufficient efforts to curb the trade. However, the nations avoided sanctions after 6 of them submitted draft action plans in response and China and Tanzania committed to do so by a specific date.
Possible punishment option: Under the convention, member states can halt trading with offender countries in the 35,000 species covered by the convention.
CITES is (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) is also known as the Washington Convention.
- It is an international agreement b/w governments to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.
Currently 178 nations are members of CITES, Headquarter in Geneva, Switzerland.
CITES was drafted as a result of a resolution adopted in 1963 at a meeting of members of IUCN.
It is an effort towards regulation of cross-border trade in wild animals and plants b/w countries to safeguard certain species from over-exploitation.
It provides protection to more than 35,000 species of animals and plants.
Although it is legally binding on all Parties to the agreement to implement the Convention, it does not take the place of national laws. Rather it provides a framework to be respected by each Party, which has to adopt its own domestic legislation to ensure that CITES is implemented at the national level.