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Procedure : 2016/2664(RSP)
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O-000088/2016 (B8-0711/2016)

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PV 13/09/2016 - 17
CRE 13/09/2016 - 17

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Verbatim report of proceedings
Tuesday, 13 September 2016 - Strasbourg Revised edition

17. Key objectives for the CITES CoP17 meeting in Johannesburg (debate)
Video of the speeches

  Przewodniczący. – Kolejnym punktem porządku dnia jest debata nad:

– pytaniem wymagającym odpowiedzi ustnej skierowanym do Rady przez Norberta Linsa, Pavla Poca, Julie Girling, Gerbena-Jana Gerbrandy’ego, Younousa Omarjee’go, Keitha Taylora i Marco Affronte w imieniu Komisji Ochrony Środowiska Naturalnego, Zdrowia Publicznego i Bezpieczeństwa Żywności w sprawie głównych celów na 17. konferencję stron konwencji CITES w Johannesburgu (RPA) (O-000088/2016 - B8-0711/2016) oraz

– pytaniem wymagającym odpowiedzi ustnej skierowanym do Komisji przez Norberta Linsa, Pavla Poca, Julie Girling, Gerbena-Jana Gerbrandy’ego, Younousa Omarjee’go, Keitha Taylora i Marco Affronte w imieniu Komisji Ochrony Środowiska Naturalnego, Zdrowia Publicznego i Bezpieczeństwa Żywności w sprawie głównych celów na 17. konferencję stron CITES w Johannesburgu (RPA) (O-000089/2016 - B8-0712/2016).


  Gerben-Jan Gerbrandy, author. – Mr President, it is a privilege to have, for the second evening in a row, a midnight debate with Commissioner Vella and I also welcome the Council.

Let me start by thanking all my colleagues who were co-authors of this resolution. I think that we found a unique way of working together to come forward with a very coherent cross—party resolution. Yesterday there was an article in The Independent by the Secretary of CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species), John Scanlon, and the Director of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Helen Clark, in which they stated that the upcoming CITES conference is the most critical CITES meeting in history. I think they are right. The poaching crisis has reached an unprecedented level and because of that there is huge pressure on the CITES system.

Can we fix it? Can we make sure that it will work in the future in a better way than it is doing now?

For Europe, this CoP is quite unique as well because it is the first Conference of the Parties in which the EU is participating as an official partner party. That is, of course, a very important step. Strangely enough, it has led to criticism from two sides: from third countries criticising the EU for wanting to have 28 votes with one voice, like the US – and I hope the Commissioner can explain what the latest state of play is there – but also internally from our own Member States. I understand that during the COREPER meeting where this was discussed there was quite an intensive debate about which topics the EU should speak on with one voice, and which it should speak on with 28 voices. I hope that is not a precedent for the future, especially because I was present in 2010 at the CITES CoP in Doha, and the EU contribution there was very ineffective.

The Commission, of course, had no speaking rights at that Conference of the Parties and the Member States were very disorganised and not united. There was a common position but there did not seem to be any common strategy, and that was quite painful to see. So my question to the Council is to ask whether it can explain how it is going to ensure that we are united and speaking with one voice and making the best of the fact that we have a common position there.

I believe that the EU is ready for this Conference of the Parties. We finally have our EU action plan, which we discussed previously. Parliament is now working on its reaction to that so I am looking forward to a strong European position. There again, I must say that what is lacking are strong commitments from the Member States.

Let me come to the resolution. This resolution is different from previous resolutions on CITES. I believe it is much more integral and holistic than ever before. We are not only talking about elephants, rhino or the psychedelic lizard: no, we are focusing on the main problem that we face in the world in this regard, namely wildlife crime – a growing threat to biodiversity and the environment, and also a global problem in terms of security, the rule of law, human rights and sustainable development, because we all know that those things go together.

Like the agenda of the Conference of the Parties, we are focusing on different issues than before, like demand reduction, sustainable livelihoods, combating corruption and effectiveness and implementation of CITES. I must say that the success of these elements will really determine the future of CITES, I would like to highlight five elements.

First of all, how are the Commission and the Member States going to succeed in getting stronger enforcement of the CITES rules? One of the main problems is that the rules are simply not enforced in the right way. That applies not only in countries where we might expect it to be so, but also in the EU itself, and paragraph 28 of our resolution is pretty clear. Also within the EU we see widespread abuse of CITES documents.

Secondly, corruption is a fundamental problem and the EU has tabled a resolution, together with Senegal. My question is to ask whether you believe that this resolution will be successful in Johannesburg and, if it were adopted, would it also be effective in practice? Maybe you can elaborate on that.

Thirdly, regarding demand reduction, we see several proposals on the table. Please tell us the latest state of play and how we can assist in reducing demand in many countries.

My fourth point concerns the CITES secretariat. Everything that we want them to do puts more work on their shoulders but, if you look at their budget, in real terms it is now lower than it was 10 years ago. So the CITES secretariat is simply not fit for the tasks that we give it, and official contributions are relatively small. So my question is to ask whether both the Commission and the Member States, on an individual basis, are willing to increase their contribution. That would not only help the secretariat but would also show commitment and trust in CITES.

Finally, on the resolution on hunting trophies: this is important for us and it is also important to send a political message to the world that trophies should be subject to strict criteria, if allowed at all. But I understand that the USA and Canada do not support the European resolution. So, do the Commission and Member States still foresee success in this field?

To conclude, we need a high sense of urgency, unity and, please, a strong European common focus.


  Ivan Korčok, President-in-Office of the Council. – Mr President, the 17th Conference of the Parties (CoP17) to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), that will take place in Johannesburg from 24 September to 5 October this year will welcome the European Union as a new party, alongside the 28 EU Member States and among the other 154 parties.

The Presidency will make sure that the EU and its Member States will act jointly at CoP17 to promote the EU position and speak with one voice. We go to Johannesburg having put a number of important proposals on the table and having co-sponsored some others. It is our intention to engage with other parties and stakeholders in promoting our proposals. We will also look for acceptable solutions that encompass the need for species conservation and at the same time respect the means for subsistence of populations with fewer or insufficient resources.

First, concerning some procedural aspects. The EU has tabled a proposal on voting transparency. It should be at the heart of the development of conservation policies and practices within the Convention. The use of secret ballots can cast doubts on the basis on which decisions are made within CITES. We have also made a proposal for a resolution on the sponsored delegated projects to increase transparency with regard to the funding of delegate participation. We are of course particularly encouraged by the support of the European Parliament on these issues. The Council, on the other hand, does not support the suggestion made by some parties to foresee in the revised Rules of Procedure certain conditions to the exercise by the EU of its voting right.

Now on more substantive aspects. The EU and its Member States, along with Senegal, have tabled a proposal for a resolution against corruption-facilitating activities conducted in violation of the Convention. Wildlife trafficking has become one of the world’s most profitable organised criminal activities. It is facilitated by corruption and weak governance structures. In some regions wildlife trafficking threatens national security and fuels conflicts by providing funding to militia and terrorist groups. We will actively promote the adoption of international criteria on the sustainable and illegal trade of hunting trophies in order to ensure that imports of these trophies are of legal and sustainable origin. The Council has recently urged the Member States to do so.

Our proposals for amendments to the CITES appendices are based on the conservation status of the species concerned and the listing criteria developed by CITES. We will do our utmost to have them adopted in Johannesburg.

We need to ensure efficient risk-based and proportionate in-country compliance monitoring and enforcement in order to improve the rate of detection of illegal wildlife-related activities. In addition, we need to improve cooperation, coordination, communication and data-sharing with wildlife implementation and enforcement agencies in third countries. I would like to underscore the need to enhance awareness-raising and education about wildlife protection and the impact of illegal trade in wildlife, as well as the need to step up training for all parts of the enforcement chain in source, consumer and transit countries.

The Presidency, together with the Commission and the Member States, is determined to take an active role to ensure that CITES continues to be an effective tool in order to attain its two main objectives: conservation and sustainable management of natural resources. The decisions that we will take in South Africa on plant and animal species will show whether CITES parties are prepared to find acceptable solutions that balance conservation needs with economic justification. We will conduct the upcoming deliberations in a spirit of cooperation and mutual understanding. Our decisions should be based on our joint interest in the protection of species that are threatened by trade. We need to maintain a diverse environment for our future generations.


  Karmenu Vella, Member of the Commission. – Mr President, I would like, first of all, to agree with Mr Gerbrandy that this CITES meeting will be fundamentally important for the protection of biodiversity and also important for the fight against wildlife trafficking and for the EU itself.

It is important for the EU itself because it will be the first opportunity to deliver many of the actions contained in our new Action Plan against Wildlife Trafficking, as full members now of CITES. The European Union has already tabled ambitious proposals and the European Parliament has been very active in shaping the EU position. Your resolution is largely supportive of the EU approach and I am very glad to see that a delegation of MEPs will attend the CoP. The EU position for the CoP will be finalised by the Member States and the Council in the coming days, as just explained by Mr Korčok, but I can already, perhaps, highlight what the EU priorities are likely to be.

First, we will support concrete measures against wildlife trafficking to strengthen enforcement in terms of range, in transit and in destination countries, and to reduce demand for illegal wildlife products. When properly implemented, CITES can make a difference against wildlife trafficking. CITES tools must be used by those countries that are hot spots for wildlife trafficking, particularly ivory trafficking, including through the National Ivory Action Plans. This needs to happen as soon as possible. We cannot afford to continue losing tens of thousands of elephants to poachers each and every year.

We will press for quick progress on this and for sanctions if progress is too slow. International trade in ivory is banned under CITES. We fully support a continuation of the ban. We must focus on action, as Mr Gerbrandy said, to reduce demand, to eradicate the drivers of ivory trafficking, and not only spend hours discussing the hypothetical merits of an indefinite trade ban or of the legislation on this trade. We want solutions that target the real problems on the ground.

The European Union is also proposing a resolution on corruption facilitating activities that are in violation of CITES. Corruption – again as already mentioned – is at the very heart of wildlife trafficking but it has not been given sufficient priority.

Our second priority is to extend CITES protection to a number of species threatened by international trade, and this is the case for species imported into the EU as exotic pets, such as the Barbary macaque, the African great parrot and a number of very rare and valuable lizard and ornamental fish species.

Also, the protection of rosewood timber is a priority. Illegal trade in rosewood species has boomed in many tropical regions and the international regime is not sufficient to stop this massive problem. The European Union decided to co-sponsor Gabon’s and Senegal’s proposal to bring more African rosewood species under CITES protection. Their inclusion in CITES Appendix II will ensure that they can only be traded if developed sustainably and legally.

We also propose to include new shark and ray species in CITES Appendix II. Much has been achieved in CITES in recent years in favour of sustainable trade in marine species, notably sharks. Work on implementing the current listing of sharks should continue and further species should be included in the CITES Convention where the listing criteria are met.

Our third priority is to reinforce the standards applying to international trade in hunting trophies of species such as lions. This issue has generated a lot of attention in this House and amongst the wider public. The European Union believes that the time has come for all CITES parties to agree on common criteria to ensure that hunting trophies of CITES species come from sustainable and legal sources.

With regard to funding or financing, I have to say that, in terms of funding, the European Union is always the leader in helping third countries cope with this issue. With regard to the CITES secretariat, I think we are already taking on board some 60% of the costs and the European Union, in addition to that, is also proposing to help fund the participation of delegates from developing countries at the CITES conference in Paris.

I do not have time this evening to mention all the issues that we will address, which include rhinoceros, pangolins, reptiles, the need to better associate local communities in wildlife programmes, the reduction of demand for illegal wildlife products, and means of stepping up police and customs cooperation against transnational organised wildlife criminals. I agree with Mr Gerbrandy that we have to enforce CITES rules at source, in transit and in destination countries, including in the European Union itself.

But let me conclude by noting the significance of this meeting for the European Union where we will be participating for the first time as a party. We have been driving the development of CITES for decades. At CoP17 we will also be able to sit at the table and to engage with others to make it a success. In order to do that, however, we will have to work constructively with Member States to ensure that we speak as one with a strong voice.


  Norbert Lins, im Namen der PPE-Fraktion. – Herr Präsident, Herr Kommissar, Herr Minister! Illegaler Artenhandel gehört weltweit zu den lukrativsten Verbrechen und spielt eine große Rolle bei der Finanzierung der organisierten Kriminalität. Der florierende Handel mit unrechtmäßig erworbenen Pflanzen und Tieren ist eine ernsthafte Bedrohung für die Natur, insbesondere was den Rückgang der Biodiversität betrifft, und auch für die Menschen. Stichworte sind Sicherheitsrisiko, Instabilität, Mangel an legalem Einkommen und Korruption.

Europa ist zugleich Ziel – Transit – und Ursprungsregion und daher stark in die illegalen Handelsströme verwickelt. Globale Zusammenarbeit ist unbedingt erforderlich; die UN—Artenschutzkommission CITES ist hierfür ein sehr guter Rahmen. Wie schon gesagt, ist die EU seit 2015 Vollmitglied von CITES und deswegen ein entscheidender Akteur bei der Konferenz in Johannesburg.

In der vorliegenden Entschließung fixieren wir die wichtigsten Ziele für das Europäische Parlament, und grundsätzlich begrüßen wir auch die Zielsetzung der Mitgliedstaaten und auch das Engagement der Kommission. Insbesondere geht es um verstärkte internationale Zusammenarbeit bei der Strafverfolgung – Stichworte: Polizei und Zollbehörden. Es geht um den grenzüberschreitenden Einsatz gegen Korruption, der auszubauen ist. Und die EU hat hier gewichtige internationale Verpflichtungen, und das Engagement ist unbedingt erforderlich.

Wichtig ist mir, die Trophäenjagd nicht grundsätzlich zu verbannen, denn ich glaube, gut und nachhaltig organisierte Trophäenjagd hat durchaus gewinnbringende Effekte für Natur und Menschen, und deswegen sind da gemeinsame Regeln im Rahmen von CITES nötig.

Ich bedanke mich bei den Kolleginnen und Kollegen für die gute Zusammenarbeit und freue mich, dass wir so viele Gemeinsamkeiten gefunden haben.


  Nicola Caputo, on behalf of the S&D Group. – Mr President, in recent years, wildlife crime became one of the most serious threats to global biodiversity and people’s livelihoods. It also has a negative impact on the rule of law, due to its close links with corruption. The EU has an important role to play in addressing this issue as Europe is currently a destination market for trafficking, in transit to other regions, as well as being, for some species, the source region for illegal trade.

The EU is a part of the problem, but also a big part of the solution. I highly welcome the fact that some of the most ambitious proposals, for example strengthening capacities to combat illegal wildlife trade, or a global support programme to reduce demand for illegal products, come from EU Member States. I personally think that another proposal that should emerge is to reinforce the global partnership against wildlife trafficking by using diplomatic tools and trade policy in relation with the key source transit and consumer countries. That should also become a key strategic objective for the EU at the upcoming CITES meeting in Johannesburg.


  Julie Girling, on behalf of the ECR Group. – Mr President, I would like to thank the Commissioner and all my co-authors, because this has been quite an easy question to put together, for a change.

I am particularly concerned though, about wildlife trafficking, as we all are, and it is vital that we make sure that the rules, as represented in CITES, are watertight so that we can be absolutely clear there is no ambiguity between what is legal and what is illegal. To that end, I support the position of some colleagues on trophy hunting, that it should be outlawed. In that sense I do not support the Commissioner’s view: this is perhaps a small point but I really do believe it is important that we make sure we have zero tolerance on these issues.

The species-specific recommendations are obviously very varied, but most of the representations I receive from members of the public – and there are a lot of them as this is a very important subject – are about ivory. Ivory is totemic. I know we spend a lot of time talking about ivory, but it is really important that we get ivory right. To that end, I would remind you of the maxim that has been in use for the last five years or so, namely that all ivory, even if legally sourced, fuels the ivory trade.

I am very proud of the fact that the UK already has a ban on the export of pre-convention raw ivory and I would prefer to see this extended to all Member States and made part of the EU negotiation brief. I would ask you, Commissioner, to raise yet again the issue of mammoth ivory, which is increasingly being mined and is increasingly muddying the waters when it comes to seeing what is legal and what is illegal.


  Frédérique Ries, au nom du groupe ALDE. – Monsieur le Président, l'Union européenne a rejoint la CITES il y a 11 mois maintenant. L'avancée est essentielle pour nous, mais bien évidemment, le travail reste immense. C'est un petit peu comme si, à chaque fois que le sort d'une espèce s'améliore un peu – je pense par exemple à celui des pandas géants –,  c'est une autre espèce qui vient s'ajouter à la liste rouge de l'UICN des espèces en danger critique d'extinction.

C'est le cas maintenant du grand gorille de l'Est qui est victime d'un braconnage intense au Congo. Il est aujourd'hui – et ce sont les organisations qui le disent – à un pas de la disparition.

L'Union européenne, c'est le cas de le dire, a un rôle essentiel à jouer à la grand-messe qui va s'ouvrir à Johannesburg. Elle doit oser bousculer certains de nos partenaires stratégiques, je pense à la Chine, je pense au Japon, et mettre à l'ordre du jour – cela vient d'être évoqué par Mme Girling – la question sensible du commerce d'ivoire d'éléphant, de cornes de rhinocéros et d'os de tigre.

L'Europe doit aussi montrer l'exemple en tant qu'important marché de transit, et je suis ravie que cette question ait été soulignée parmi les priorités par notre rapporteur et par le commissaire aussi.

Il est inadmissible que les trafiquants – ces trafics criminels – n'encourent dans certains pays de l'Union, chez nous, donc, que des peines minimales: amendes de 15 000 euros maximum dans certains États membres, alors que la corne de rhinocéros sur le marché noir peut atteindre 50 000 euros.

Les sanctions doivent être harmonisées et réellement dissuasives, c'est en termes un peu plus directs notre article 50 dans notre résolution.


  Younous Omarjee, au nom du groupe GUE/NGL. – Monsieur le Président, Monsieur le Ministre, Monsieur le Commissaire Vella, je ne sais pas si nous devons parler du commerce des espèces sauvages, ou s'il serait plus approprié de parler du commerce sauvage des espèces, puisque s'il est question de sauvagerie, la sauvagerie se trouve du côté de l'humanité. Je ne sais pas non plus si nous devons parler de commerce, mais plutôt de crime, des crimes de l'humanité contre les espèces menacées de disparition.

Nous avons toujours tendance à attendre la survenance de drames pour commencer à agir, et le déclin de ces espèces est aujourd'hui devenu tragique. Vous l'avez dit, le lion d'Afrique connaît un déclin de près de la moitié de sa population et disparaît de douze pays européens. Les éléphants d'Afrique sont presque tous massacrés pour leur ivoire. Des millions de pangolins et de rhinocéros sont braconnés pour leurs écailles et leurs cornes, et les forêts de Madagascar, près de l'île où je vis, la Réunion, sont pillées pour leur bois de rose.

Nous devons prendre la mesure du facteur temps. Il est tard, très tard, mais pas trop tard pour à la fois enrayer la sixième vague d'extinction des espèces, mais aussi enrayer le recul du déclin des espèces sauvages.


  Ricardo Serrão Santos (S&D). – Senhor Presidente, cumprimento também o Senhor Comissário. Num recente relatório, a IUCN afirmou que, com um declínio de 80 % nas últimas gerações, quatro dos seis grandes primatas estão a um passo da extinção.

Com a acelerada perda da biodiversidade a que se tem assistido nas últimas décadas, são necessárias ações mais rigorosas e consequentes.

Em pleno coração da Europa, existem lamentáveis casos de pesca ilegal, não declarada e não regulamentada, a tristemente famosa pesca INN. Os casos do esturjão e da enguia, especificamente a enguia de vidro, são clamorosos. Quando andamos a distribuir cartões amarelos e vermelhos por esse mundo fora, não evitamos, para nosso embaraço, que a pesca INN grasse em plena União Europeia.

O novo plano de ação de combate ao tráfico de espécies selvagens europeu é importante e tem de ser cumprido em todos os seus objetivos. A CITES precisa de ser reforçada e os casos de corrupção e tráfico ilegal têm de ser debelados.


Pytania z sali


  Νότης Μαριάς ( ECR). – Κύριε Πρόεδρε, θα ήθελα να πω στην απούσα κυρία Malmström ότι δεν υπάρχει καμιά προστασία στη φέτα και ότι οι παραγωγοί στην Ελλάδα είναι ανάστατοι και διαμαρτύρονται. Καλό θα είναι να πάει να τους μιλήσει και να τους εξηγήσει αυτά που μας είπε εδώ. Στην προσπάθειά της βέβαια να δικαιολογήσει τα αδικαιολόγητα, αναγκάστηκε να καρφώσει και την ελληνική κυβέρνηση η οποία, ενώ στην Ελλάδα παρουσιάζεται ως διαφωνούσα, τελικά, σύμφωνα με την κυρία Malmström, τα έχει βρει μαζί της και είναι ευχαριστημένη με τη λύση που δίνεται από τη συμφωνία με τη Νότιο Αφρική, μία συμφωνία που δεν προστατεύει την ελληνική φέτα. Για αυτό, θα καταψηφίσω αύριο την κύρωση της Συμφωνίας μεταξύ της Ευρωπαϊκής Ένωσης και των χωρών της Νοτίου Αφρικής.

Όσον αφορά τώρα τη CITES, θέλω να πω ότι πρόκειται για μια σημαντική διεθνής συμφωνία η οποία προστατεύει αποτελεσματικά περισσότερα από 30.000 είδη άγριας πανίδας και χλωρίδας. Μέσω της σύμβασης αυτής αντιμετωπίζονται αποτελεσματικά το λαθρεμπόριο και τα διάφορα κυκλώματα. Επομένως, είναι θετικός ο ρόλος της σύμβασης και θεωρώ σημαντικό ότι η Ευρωπαϊκή Ένωση έχει προσχωρήσει στη σύμβαση αυτή ήδη από το 2015.


(Koniec pytań z sali)


  Karmenu Vella, Member of the Commission. – Mr President, I would like to thank all Members for their speeches because they confirm the strong interest of this House in wildlife conservation, and their desire for the EU to play, and to continue playing, a leading role at the CITES CoP17. Many commitments have been made in recent years at the international level to combat wildlife trafficking and to make international trade in wildlife products legal and sustainable. We now have a duty to implement all these commitments, and CITES CoP17 will be a test to see how serious the international community is about turning these commitments into concrete actions.

One or two comments with regard to what Mr Omarjee said. Yes, I do believe this is a criminal act and I also believe this is a criminal act which could be linked to other similar illegal trafficking of arms, drugs and possibly also human trafficking. With regard to our position, the EU position on ivory trafficking, the EU is extremely concerned about the current levels of ivory trafficking and elephant poaching, and we are proud to be a world leader in the fight against this trafficking. The European Union is the biggest donor for conservation in Africa. I am sure you all know that without the European Union support a large number of protected areas would simply not exist, and emblematic species would have been wiped out from large parts of the African continent.

With regard to trophy hunting, yes, there is – as Ms Girling said – another view on the European Union’s perspective, but here I want to explain that the European Union has very strict rules when it comes to authorising the import of trophies into the European Union. They were tightened in 2015 to ensure a thorough check by EU scientific experts on the sustainability of these imports. When the sustainability of these trophies cannot be established, no imports into the EU can take place. We now believe that internationally agreed guidelines should be agreed in the context of CITES to ensure that hunting trophies of CITES-listed species come only from legal and sustainable sources.

With regard to Mr Serrão Santos, I think he made a comment about eels, something which is also very important, especially the European eel. The EU has also submitted a proposal to review the status of eel species with a view to making recommendations to ensure sustainable trade in them.

To conclude, you as Members have worked for months with the EU Member States, with a lot of MEPs, with stakeholders and countries to prepare for this meeting, and we are ready for the challenge. There are many differing views around the world on the best way to conserve animal and plant species and fauna, and there will certainly be long and difficult discussions at the CITES CoP.

We have a proud record in bringing new species under CITES protection and supporting its action against criminal acts. The EU’s accession to CITES, as Mr Marias also mentioned, further reinforces our determination in that regard and we will work actively in Johannesburg to make a success of this COP. I would be happy if you agree for us to come back to you after the COP meeting to report on progress made.


  Ivan Korčok, President-in-Office of the Council. – Mr President, I would like to start by saying that the Council is working on the EU position for CoP17 and will adopt a position on the decision at its meeting next week. Parliament will of course be duly informed. The Council appreciates very much the importance that Parliament attaches to the protection of endangered species, as is clearly stated in its resolution on the EU strategic objective for CITES CoP17 to be adopted on Thursday.

Now that the EU is a CITES party alongside the 28 Member States, Mr Gerbrandy asked who will vote on what and who will speak on what? In line with Article 21(5) of CITES, the EU will vote in the fields of its competence. Those have been set out in the declaration of competences when the EU deposited its instrument of accession. Irrespective of whether the EU or the individual Member States vote, the vote will be based on a coordinated position, as has been the practice at previous CoPs, with the exception of budgetary matters where the EU and the different Member States contributing separately to the budget may express separate views. As in previous CoPs, the EU and its Member States will deliver statements based on positions agreed between them. At the CoP17, statements will be delivered for the first time from behind the EU nameplate.

Finally, please allow me to conclude by saying that CITES CoP17 is an excellent opportunity to further strengthen global efforts against wildlife trafficking, including through new listings of endangered species. The Presidency will do its utmost to have our proposals adopted in Johannesburg.


  Przewodniczący. – Otrzymałem jeden projekt rezolucji złożony zgodnie z art. 128 ust. 5 Regulaminu.

Zamykam debatę.

Głosowanie odbędzie się w czwartek 15 września 2016 r.

Oświadczenia pisemne (art. 162)


  Catherine Bearder (ALDE), in writing. – This resolution is a historic opportunity to end the global ivory trade and save elephants from extinction. Every year 30 000 elephants are slaughtered by poachers who sell their ivory tusks illegally for massive profits. We must save these wonderful animals for future generations, we simply cannot allow this barbaric trade to continue. The European Parliament calls upon Member States to ban all imports, exports and commercial sales of ivory products until wild elephant populations are no longer threatened by poaching. To support this ban, all countries must also introduce tougher measures to tackle corruption, strengthen controls at border crossing points and put in place stringent penalties against criminal groups trafficking illegal wildlife products.

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