Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Thu Apr 21, 2016 8:34 pm

Lets just hope Namibia doesn't do the proposing of legalizing trade. Just a pity that stock piles are not going to be destroyed - makes one skeptical that although trade is off the table for now it doesn't mean its not going to rear it's ugly head in the not too distant future. Education and demand reduction needs to become a priority across all borders and oceans.

Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:56 pm

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/ ... ng-efforts

Swaziland unveils plan to legalise rhino horn to pay for anti-poaching efforts
Leaked document shows proceeds from the sale of 330kg stockpile would be used to protect country’s 73 white rhinos from poaching
Swaziland said the sale to the traditional medicine markets of the far east would generate $9.9m, which would be used to protect the tiny landlocked country’s 73 white rhinos from poaching.

The kingdom of Swaziland has made a surprise proposal to legalise the trade in rhino horn in order to pay for anti-poaching measures.

In a leaked document addressed to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (Cites), Swaziland’s anti-poaching body said it wanted to sell the country’s 330kg stockpile of horn collected from naturally deceased animals and confiscated from poachers.

It said the sale to the traditional medicine markets of the far east would generate $9.9m, which would be used to protect the tiny landlocked country’s 73 white rhinos from poaching.

Swaziland proposed to sell a further 20kg each year, raising $600,000, by harvesting horn from living herds. Rhino horns regrow after being cut.

The Cites Management Authority of Swaziland, which made the proposal, said the 39-year-old ban on trading rhino horn had failed. It cited the poaching crisis in neighbouring South Africa, where 1,175 rhinos were killed in 2015.

“At present 100% of the proceeds from the sale of rhino horn are taken by criminals, while rhino custodians pay 100% of the costs of rhino protection and production yet they desperately need funds to cover these costs,” said the authority.

Contacts directly involved in the drafting told the Guardian that they had formally lodged the proposal with Cites. It will now be formally discussed and voted on at the Cites Conference of Parties in Johannesburg in September. The bid is likely to fail, because the majority of parties have little appetite for a legalised trade, preferring to focus on dampening demand in the Asia

The wildlife trade watchdog Traffic said it had been completely surprised by the move and said there were major legal hurdles to its implementation. Namely, even if the country legalised the sale of its own horns, it would be illegal for anyone to buy it.

“There is still significant uncertainty as to how existing markets would be affected by any legal trade in terms of supply–demand dynamics. Such a sale might well stimulate further illegal trade and thus compound the ongoing poaching crisis,” said a spokesperson.

While it is unlikely to bring about a legal trade, Swaziland’s proposal ensures the issue will be prominently discussed at the biggest global talks on the illegal wildlife trade.

“Demand reduction and education, cited as new measures to be tried, are not new at all ... these have not been effective,” said the proposal.

The document said the move had been precipitated by the withdrawal of an expected proposal by South Africa and claimed there was near consensus about this issue at a recent meeting of Southern African Development Community (SADC). Of the 12 countries, only Botswana disagreed.

Rhino horn is a highly lucrative, illicitly traded commodity in China and Vietnam where it is considered to have medicinal properties. In fact it has none.

Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Thu Apr 28, 2016 6:57 pm

Cop17-RhinoHornProposalSwaziland-Apr16.pdf
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Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Thu May 05, 2016 1:46 pm

Swaziland accuses SA of backtracking on rhino horn trade 0
BY MELISSA REITZ - 3 MAY 2016 - TRAVELLER24 - FREE TO PUBLISH CREDIT CAT
Swaziland conservation authorities have accused South Africa of reneging on an agreement to propose the legalization of rhino horn trade, which draws into question South Africa’s stance on the issue.

In formal documents submitted to CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Flora and Fauna) Swaziland said eleven SADC (Southern African Development Community) nations, including South Africa, agreed on 6 April to support a proposal to trade in rhino horn.

A week after this commitment was made the South African Cabinet decided (at their 13 April meeting) that it did not support submitting a pro-trade proposal to CITES. The Cabinet decision was informed by the findings of a Committee of Inquiry, convened by the Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA).

“Swaziland was expecting South Africa to submit a rhino horn trade proposal to CoP17 and was ready to support it,” the formal Swazi submission to CITES states.“[…] with the exception of only one country (Botswana), there was a consensus in favour of rhino horn trade and in support of a trade proposal to CoP 17” (the CITES Congress of Parties 17, which is due to be held in Johannesburg later this year).

“These claims are very alarming – how could South Africa make a commitment to supporting trade proposals to COP 17 when at that stage they must have known the recommendations of their own Committee of Inquiry which were before Cabinet” Michele Pickover of the EMS Foundation said.

Swaziland says South Africa’s change of heart forced it to make “an eleventh hour” proposal to CITES requesting permission to sell 330 kilograms of stockpiled rhino horn.

In a written response to questions the Department of Environmental Affairs would not confirm or deny Swaziland’s claims that it had supported a joint SADC position in recommending trade in rhino horn.

“The Department can confirm that South Africa informed the SADC meeting that a decision relating to a proposed international trade in rhino horn had not yet been made – and that, at the time, the matter was to be considered by the South African Cabinet in due course,” the DEA said.

The DEA declined to say whether South Africa would support the Swaziland proposal at CITES.

At the time of writing Swazi Conservation officials had not responded to questions on the issue but their role has been questioned by some conservationists.

“This proposal looks a little suspicious. Is this a proxy move motivated by a handful of pro-traders?” conservationist Ian Michler said. “It is also entirely out of step with world opinion, a situation a nation such as Swaziland can’t afford to be in”

Recently, Swaziland Big Game Parks (BGP) was widely criticized for its capture of 18 wild elephants, one of which later died, which were sent to zoos in the US.

Ted Reilly, the founder of BGP, is also Swaziland’s top CITES official as well as the country’s Scientific Authority responsible for both the proposal to trade rhino horn and the elephant export. This is arguably a serious conflict of interest.

According to the London based Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) Swaziland’s submission to CITES could not work under international law since international commercial trade in rhino horn is banned under CITES and there are no legal buyers for Swaziland’s horn.

“The EIA urges Swaziland to immediately withdraw its reckless proposal and to focus on securing the survival of rhinos in the wild instead of putting a price tag on these threatened species,” EIA director Mary Rice said.

Original article: http://traveller24.news24.com/Explore/G ... isapp=true

Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Thu May 05, 2016 2:34 pm

I wonder what is behind all this :-?

Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Thu May 05, 2016 7:05 pm

Thanks, Toks! O0

I think it is just that SA are hosting COP17 this year, and government is awash in scandals, so don't need this right now in election year.

If you can call it a government, apparently deals can be broken at will... :O^

Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Sun May 08, 2016 7:06 pm

South Africa may re-consider regulated rhino horn trade in future
AFP | 08 Mai, 2016 16:33

South Africa does not rule out a future call for regulated international trade in rhino horn trade, despite its decision not to push for legalisation at an upcoming CITES conference, a cabinet minister said Sunday.


South Africa has "no immediate intention to trade in rhino horn," but is "maintaining the option to reconsider regulated legal international trade in rhino horn" when key requirements are met, Environmental Affairs Minister Edna Molewa told reporters.

Some campaigners are calling for the lifting of the ban and had hoped South Africa would make a proposal to that effect at the upcoming Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) conference in Johannesburg in September.

But South Africa says it will only make such a call when its key conditions -- including clear trading models with targeted markets - have been met.

"One thing we are very careful about is that we need to have a successful proposition for South Africa that goes through, that's not hampered by any doubt... but now there are a lot of uncertainties," Molewa said.

The minister also revealed that the numbers of South African rhino slaughtered by poachers so far this year has dropped to 363 compared with 404 for the same period last year.

The killing of rhinos is driven by demand for their horns in countries such as China and Vietnam where they are prized for their purported medicinal purposes.

South African which is home to some 20,000 rhino, or 80 percent of the global population, has suffered the brunt of poaching.

Out of the total 1,338 rhino poached in Africa last year, only 163 were killed outside South Africa.

http://www.timeslive.co.za/local/2016/0 ... -in-future

Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Sun May 08, 2016 8:19 pm

How come that I am not at all surprised O**

Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Mon May 09, 2016 11:22 am

Always keeping their options open! 0*\

Re: Legalising International Trade in Rhino Horn ???

Wed May 11, 2016 9:51 am

https://www.environment.gov.za/mediarel ... ohornornot

Minister Edna Molewa on the Committee of Inquiry into the feasibility of a legal trade in rhino horn, or not
8 May 2016



Ladies and Gentlemen,

You may recall that the Committee of Inquiry was established as South Africa was experiencing continuously increasing levels of poaching despite the various interventions implemented to address the illegal killing of rhino and the illegal trade in rhino horn. Previous stakeholder engagement processes, particularly the Rhino Issues Management process in 2012, recommended regulated, legal national and international commercial trade in rhino horn as one component of a suite of solutions.

The legalization of commercial international trade as part of the interventions to address the poaching crisis is however a contentious matter and therefore a comprehensive process was required to carefully consider it.

The Chair of the Committee of Inquiry will provide information relating to the processes the Committee of Inquiry undertook to develop its final report.

Chair statement

Thank you Chair, the Committee of Inquiry reported to an inter-departmental Technical Advisory Committee and the Inter-Ministerial Committee appointed by Cabinet to provide guidance on this matter.

The IMC considered the reports of the Committee of Inquiry as well as the Inter-departmental Technical Advisory Committee and formulated recommendations to Cabinet.

In April 2016, Cabinet approved the recommendations made by the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) appointed by Cabinet to provide guidance relating to the possibility of proposing a legal, regulated, commercial international trade in rhino horn to CITES COP17.

Cabinet approved the implementation of the following minimum requirements that will create an environment conducive for rhino conservation in South Africa and effectively address rhino poaching and the illegal trade in rhino horn, namely:

Security, including the adoption and implementation of the National Integrated Strategy to Combat Wildlife Trafficking;
Community empowerment, including the development, adoption and implementation of a Community Empowerment Plan;
Biological management, including the adoption of an African rhino range States African Rhino Conservation Action Plan;
Responsive legislative provisions that are effectively implemented and enforced, including incentives to rhino owners to support continued investment in the conservation of rhino; and
Demand management, including information gathering to enhance our knowledge about demand for rhino horn and identifying the most effective interventions to manage demand.
The various government departments’ required to effectively implement the afore-mentioned recommendations were also identified and specific activities will be identified for inclusion in their respective strategic plans.

With regard to the international trade considerations, it should be noted that the Committee of Inquiry was advised by the IMC to provide various options to be considered by government relating to the international commercial trade in rhino horn.

Commercial international trade consideration is linked to the challenges related to demand from consumer countries and sustainable funding for ongoing efforts to reduce poaching and illegal wildlife trade.

The proposed solutions to these challenges are the most contentious ones in the rhino conservation context and are also the areas where the evidence base is weak and there is considerable uncertainty regarding the likely success of any of the proposed solutions.

Cabinet considered the four possible options based on different solutions to challenges of demand (demand reduction versus trade) and funding (donor funds, tourism levies, trade).

The four options were:

No trade in rhino (including termination of hunting and stockpile destruction), backed by a policy change that bans international trade in key affected species and strongly supports demand reduction
Application of current policy, with no consideration of commercial trade; destruction of stockpiles and investment in demand reduction
Application of current policy, with no immediate intention to trade in rhino horn, but maintaining the option to re-consider regulated legal international trade in rhino horn when the key requirements identified earlier are met
Promote regulated, legal international trade as soon as the necessary requirements are met
The Cabinet also noted the trade mechanisms, but recognised, as indicated by the Committee, that it would not be possible to finalise the institutional design of trade mechanisms without engaging with, and obtaining agreement from, potential trade partners, and on obtaining agreement from government and various stakeholders on their respective roles in the management and control of any trade mechanism.

Cabinet furthermore noted that any potential mechanism to legalise international trade in rhino horn will have to ensure not only a reduction in poaching and the risk of extinction, but also benefit the conservation of free-ranging rhino; secure financing for the expansion of rhino range; address threats in rhino range states and ensure the establishment of governance structures that reduce corruption.

In addition, this mechanism would also have to ensure that marginalised communities neighbouring conservation areas received tangible and sustainable direct and indirect benefits that enhance interest in and protection of live rhino and conservation areas.

The inter-departmental Technical Advisory Committee and the Inter-Ministerial Committee considered the four options in the context of the five key areas that require implementation and recommended the following option to Cabinet:

Application of current policy, with no immediate intention to trade in rhino horn, but maintaining the option to re-consider regulated legal international trade in rhino horn when the key requirements identified earlier are met
South Africa will therefore not be applying for the opening of a legal, international commercial trade in rhino horn at CITES COP17, which we will be hosting in Johannesburg from 24 September to 5 October 2016.
To access the statement of the Chair of the Committee of Inquiry, Ms Nana Magomola, follow the link below:

>> Statement of the Chair of the Committee of Inquiry

For media inquiries contact:

Albi Modise

Cell: 083 490 2871