Providing analysis at the 17th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (CoP17) of CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) in Johannesburg, on behalf of Fondation Franz Weber, David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation and Pro Wildlife. Our experts are available for background and interviews. CONTACT: Don Lehr / email@example.com / US mobile: +1 917 304 4058 / SA mobile: +27 (0)76 183 1864
Developments from yesterday – Tuesday 27 September
- Working Group on 1) closure of domestic markets of elephant ivory and 3) ivory stockpiles
- The Working Group discussing two overlapping proposals on the closure of domestic markets for elephant ivory submitted by the United States (Doc. 27 Annex 1) and member States of the African Elephant Coalition (57.2), along with a proposal from the member States of the African Elephant Coalition on Ivory stockpiles (57.3) met for the second time last evening.
- New text harmonizing elements of the original USA and African Elephant Coalition proposals on domestic markets was presented to the Working Group.
- Sources inside the Working Group noted:
- Frank exchanges between key actors Namibia, Kenya, South Africa, the US, China and Japan about whether or how domestic markets should be closed, in whole or in part.
- The EU was oddly quiet throughout the evening, perhaps preparing the ground to use its 28 votes to broker a compromise.
- One country is holding out on whether the word “destruction” can be used in the final agreement on ivory stockpiles.
- Committee II debate on live trade in elephants
- Committee II discussed two overlapping proposals on live trade in elephants:
- 57.4 – Trade in live elephants: Proposed revision of Resolution Conf. 10.10 (Rev. CoP16) on Trade in elephant specimens (submitted by member States of the African Elephant Coalition)
- 40 – International trade in live Appendix II animals to appropriate and acceptable destinations (submitted by the USA)
- A lively debate on the floor ensued with numerous interventions centering on whether export of live, wild-caught elephants should be allowed or not and, if so, under what conditions.
- Kenya, a co-proponent of Doc. 57.4, and the USA agreed to form a drafting group to attempt to isolate what can be agreed here and reach a decision on how to move forward.
Today’s Agenda – Wednesday 28 September
The Working Group on domestic markets and ivory stockpiles will meet again this evening. No specific discussions on elephants or ivory today in Committee I or II.