Talks Continue on Closure of Domestic Ivory Markets
Donald Lehr
28 September 2016

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 / / US mobile: +1 917 304 4058 / SA mobile: +27 (0)76 183 1864

Developments from yesterday – Tuesday 27 September

  1. 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.
  1. Committee II debate on live trade in elephants

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.