OSG at CITES 17th Conference of Parties Johannesburg, South Africa
From 23 Sept - 05 Oct., approximately 3,000 representatives from over 150 countries and hundreds of NGOs and scientific organisations met in South Africa for the 17th Conference of the Parties to CITES--the Convention on the International Trade of Endangered Species of Fauna and Flora.
The CITES Convention governs international trade in all orchids, which represent about 75% of all CITES-listed species. Amy Hinsley and Jacob Phelps represented the OSG, and its new Trade Sub-Group, at the CoP, and were the only IUCN group present representing the plant kingdom.
Orchids received only minor attention during the negotiation, with only 1 specific agenda item. This, however, involved an important discussion around the trade and regulation of "finished" cosmetic, medicinal and edible products that include orchid parts. The CoP decided to establish a Working Group to explore these issues, and OSG highlighted just how little information we have on the species used, trade networks, products involved, or their how the trade in these finished products might affect species conservation.