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‘Worldwide legal wildlife trade increased by 200%’

  • Category
    Ecology and Environment
  • Published
    14th Dec, 2020

Worldwide legal wildlife trade have increased by 2,000% since 1980, as per a latest report.


Worldwide legal wildlife trade have increased by 2,000% since 1980, as per a latest report.


The Report

  • The report has been prepared by the by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES).
    • IPBES is an intergovernmental organisation established to improve the interface between science and policy on issues of biodiversity and ecosystem services.
  • It is based on a workshop, held virtually from July 27-31 2020, to review the scientific evidence on the origin, emergence and impact of the novel coronavirus disease and other pandemics. 

Key-highlights of the Report

  • According to the report, the international legal wildlife trade has increased 500 percent in value since 2005 and 2,000 percent since the 1980s.
  • On the other hand, the estimated value of the global illegal trade in wildlifeis worth around $7-23 billion per year, equivalent to nearly 25 percent of the value of the legal market. 

The warning

  • Even the legal trade will become unsustainable due to:
    • insufficient and inadequate regulation
    • globalisation of trade routes
    • lack of sufficient reporting
    • links between poverty and illegal hunting

The role of CITES

  • Since 1975, international legal trade in wildlife had been regulated by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
  • CITES has 183 countries, including India, as its signatories. 
  • The report noted that CITES had been able to reduce wildlife trade, drive up value of sustainably traded species and products and promote captive-breeding, ranching or farming as alternatives to wild capture.
  • However, it added that the international trade in a large number of wild species — principally fisheries and forestry resources — were not regulated under CITES, while the domestic use and trade of wildlife fell outside the purview of the Convention.

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