CITES COP17 Conference running from 24th September to 5th October

CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) is an international agreement between governments. Its aim is to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.

Annually, international wildlife trade is estimated to be worth billions of dollars and to include hundreds of millions of plant and animal specimens. The trade is diverse, ranging from live animals and plants to a vast array of wildlife products derived from them, including food products, exotic leather goods, wooden musical instruments, timber, tourist curios and medicines. Levels of exploitation of some animal and plant species are high and the trade in them, together with other factors, such as habitat loss, is capable of heavily depleting their populations and even bringing some species close to extinction. Many wildlife species in trade are not endangered, but the existence of an agreement to ensure the sustainability of the trade is important in order to safeguard these resources for the future.

Visit www.cites.org for more information.


Useful Information

From 24 September - 5 October 2016, Johannesburg will host the seventeenth conference of the parties to CITES. Find out more about the venue, transport, accommodation and activities in Joburg.

Knowledge Centre

The Department of Environmental Affairs' conservation efforts are extensive and are aimed at protecting the country's environment and empowering South African people. Click here to find out more about the projects and programmes relating to conservation and sustainable use.​

CoP17 - 24th September to 5th October 2016

The 17th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora will evaluate the progress made since 2013, and take decisions on what additional measures are needed to end illicit wildlife trafficking, among other things.


Official Statements

South African Minister of environmental affairs SIGNS HOST COUNTRY AGREEMENT FOR CITES COP17. Logo Unveiled In Support of Biodiversity Conservation

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South Africa's effort

Driven by the importance of conserving the nation's biodiversity and sustainability, South Africa's Department of Environmental Affairs, as the manager of conservation policy, aims to radically transform its approach to environmental protection, while balancing it with socio-economic development.

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