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Document 52016DC0087

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COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE COUNCIL, THE EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMITTEE AND THE COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS EU Action Plan against Wildlife Trafficking

COM/2016/087 final
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Brussels, 26.2.2016

COM(2016) 87 final

COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE COUNCIL, THE EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMITTEE AND THE COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS

EU Action Plan against Wildlife Trafficking

{SWD(2016) 38 final}


COMMUNICATION FROM THE COMMISSION TO THE EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT, THE COUNCIL, THE EUROPEAN ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COMMITTEE AND THE COMMITTEE OF THE REGIONS

EU Action Plan against Wildlife Trafficking

1. Setting the scene

Wildlife trafficking 1 has become one of the world's most profitable organised crimes. The exact scale is difficult to quantify, but different sources 2 estimate the profits from such trafficking at between EUR 8 and EUR 20 billion annually. It covers a broad range of protected species, including elephants and rhinos, corals, pangolins, tigers and great apes.

A growing problem worldwide…

The illicit ivory trade has more than doubled since 2007, and is over three times greater than it was in 1998. Between 2007 and 2013, rhino poaching increased by 7000% in South Africa, endangering the very survival of this species 3 . More than 4000 tonnes of highly endangered rosewood suspected to have been illegally exported from Madagascar were seized by the authorities in various transit and destination countries between November 2013 and April 2014 alone.

The EU has an important role to play in tackling this traffic, as Europe is currently a destination market and a hub for trafficking in transit to other regions. It is also a region from which certain species are sourced for illegal trade. In recent years, Member States have reported, in particular, seizures of ivory and rhino horns in transit and illegal imports of live reptiles and exotic birds, while several tonnes of highly endangered eels from the EU have been illegally sold to Asia.

… with major implications for the rule of law, crime and security

Wildlife trafficking has a devastating impact on biodiversity, threatening to eradicate some species. Moreover, it both creates incentives for corrupt practices and is enabled by them, thereby undermining the rule of law. Notably in some regions in Africa, it has a very negative impact on the potential for economic development 4 .

Wildlife trafficking is very attractive to criminals, as it is highly lucrative and, in most countries, a low enforcement priority by comparison with other forms of trafficking, so the risk of detection and penalties is very limited. Links with money laundering and other forms of organised crime, such as trafficking in drugs and firearms, have been regularly reported 5 . The UN Security Council has acknowledged that wildlife trafficking in Central Africa is fuelling conflicts and threatening regional and national security by providing a source of funding to militia groups 6 .

A higher international profile…

Attention to wildlife trafficking at the international political level has grown in recent years, given the surge in its scale and impact. The UN General Assembly adopted the first resolution on this specific subject, which was co-sponsored by all EU Member States, in July 2015 7 . The issue was also specifically addressed at other recent important international events, such as a high-level conference held in Kasane, Botswana in March 2015 8 , and the G7 Summit in June 2015 9 . As a result, joint commitments were made by the international community, including the EU and its Member States, to step up anti-trafficking action.

Numerous measures to combat wildlife trafficking have been adopted under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), a key international treaty regulating the international trade in wildlife, to which the EU became a party in 2015. The United States have set up a Presidential Task Force and adopted a national strategy against wildlife trafficking. Key market countries such as China are showing increased engagement, notably through stronger enforcement efforts, and the will to cooperate more closely with the EU on these issues. The African Union has started implementing a continent-wide strategy.

…which needs to be translated into action on the ground

The EU has already shown leadership in tackling the illegal trade in natural resources by adopting ambitious policies on timber and fishery products. This EU Action Plan demonstrates that the EU is ready to live up to international expectations and commitments, and that it is raising the level of its ambition as regards action against the illegal trade in wildlife. This will also help to ensure that the significant investments made over the last decades through EU development support for wildlife conservation worldwide will not be undermined through criminal activities.

The Action Plan is a major contribution towards the Sustainable Development Goals set under the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development agreed by heads of state at a UN summit in September 2015. Goal 15, which relates to biodiversity, sets the target of "tak[ing] urgent action to end poaching and trafficking of protected species of flora and fauna, and address[ing] both demand and supply of illegal wildlife products" 10 . 

The European Parliament called for an Action Plan in a resolution adopted in January 2014 11 . An EU Action Plan has also been supported by many EU Member States, international organisations, NGOs, and concerned businesses at a stakeholder consultation on the EU approach against wildlife trafficking, launched by the European Commission in February 2014 12 .

The EU and its Member States need to address the problem together. EU-wide rules regulating the trade in wildlife have been in place in all Member States since 1983 13 , implementing CITES, and the Commission issued a recommendation on enforcement in 2007 14 .

However, reports 15 reveal significant differences in how the Member States implement and enforce these shared rules. This represents a major risk; criminals can easily exploit this state of affairs by diverting trade routes accordingly, as a number of cases in recent years have shown. It has also emerged, in various reports and during the stakeholder consultation, that lack of awareness and political engagement are also major obstacles to combating wildlife trafficking effectively.

A joint commitment by the EU and its Member States, in the form of an Action Plan, to taking a series of measures, implementing shared international commitments and acknowledging at a political level the importance of tackling the problem, represents a way to ensure more even EU-wide enforcement. It will help boost the EU's credibility worldwide when it demands that its global partners take stronger action against wildlife trafficking.

In implementing this Action Plan, it will be essential to work together closely with stakeholders, including civil society organisations and relevant business sectors, on many specific measures to make maximum use of the available expertise and knowledge and ensure maximum impact.

2. The components of the Action Plan

The EU Action Plan comprises a series of measures to be taken by EU institutions and/or Member States. These are set out in the Annex to this communication.

Clearly, sufficient finance and human resources will be needed to support these measures. This Action Plan provides the impetus and framework for making better use of existing EU resources. The measures are essentially designed to improve cooperation between all the players concerned, make more effective use of existing tools and policies, and strengthen synergies between them, so that wildlife trafficking can be better tackled across the EU and globally.

The measures, which are designed to address a complex problem holistically by involving all relevant organisations, are based on three priorities:
(1) preventing wildlife trafficking and addressing its root causes,

(2) implementing and enforcing existing rules and combating organised wildlife crime more effectively, and

(3) strengthening the global partnership of source, consumer and transit countries against wildlife trafficking.

The objectives and related actions under each priority are detailed in the table in the Annex.

Priority 1: Preventing wildlife trafficking and addressing its root causes

Efforts will be made to reduce the demand for and the supply of illegal wildlife products, both within the EU and globally, by using the available multilateral (CITES) and EU-specific tools, supporting specific campaigns and further limiting ivory trade within and from the EU (Objective 1.1 – see the table in the Annex). One important way to tackle the root causes of wildlife trafficking is to ensure that rural communities in source countries are more engaged in wildlife conservation, and that they benefit more from it (Objective 1.2).

Engaging more actively with relevant business sectors, ranging from those active in wildlife trade or using wildlife products to those that provide services to the trade, is another focus area. This reflects EU commitment to the responsible management of global supply chains 16 (Objective 1.3). Finally, multilateral and bilateral measures will be taken to tackle corruption, a crucial enabling factor for wildlife trafficking throughout the enforcement chain (Objective 1.4).

Priority 2: Implementing and enforcing existing rules and combating organised wildlife crime more effectively

Although existing international and EU rules on the wildlife trade are appropriate overall, numerous studies and reports reveal 17 significant difficulties with implementing and enforcing them. This is particularly true of the relatively new phenomenon of organised wildlife crime. A review of shortcomings in implementation is to be conducted for all Member States, and strategies for tackling them are to be developed, to ensure that existing rules are enforced more consistently across the EU (Objective 2.1).

Setting enforcement priorities jointly and having Europol and Eurojust provide dedicated support for cross-border cases will help make checks and enforcement more strategic in nature. In line with the EU Agenda on Security, a review will be started in 2016 to assess whether the current EU legislative framework for tackling environmental crime, particularly organised wildlife crime, is fit for purpose.

The purpose of Objective 2.2 is to boost the capacity of all links in the enforcement chain and the judiciary to take effective action against wildlife trafficking in the EU. This requires national action to improve inter-agency cooperation and coordination, communication and data flow by sharing best practice at EU level. The knowledge base on wildlife trafficking cases needs to be improved, and training is essential.

Fighting organised crime more effectively (Objective 2.3) in the area of wildlife trafficking requires targeted awareness-raising amongst specialists on organised crime, cybercrime and money laundering. In addition, all Member States must implement the international commitments they have made, to ensure that their laws on organised crime cover wildlife trafficking and that appropriate penalties can be imposed for trafficking. Finally, international cooperation on enforcement is to be improved (Objective 2.4) through participation in international law enforcement operations, technical assistance and targeted financial support.

Priority 3: Strengthening the global partnership of source, consumer and transit countries against wildlife trafficking

Various measures will be taken to step up funding to support developing countries in their efforts to combat wildlife trafficking, make support more effective and use it more strategically. This will be done through comprehensive needs assessments and by coordinating support more effectively with other donors (Objective 3.1). To strengthen the global partnership against wildlife trafficking, the diplomatic tools of the EU and its Member States and other tools, notably EU trade policy, must be used more effectively in relations with key source, transit and consumer countries and relevant regional organisations (Objective 3.2).

Better tools must be developed to tackle the links between wildlife trafficking and security that exist in some regions (Objective 3.3). Finally, the existing multilateral processes, in international agreements and fora, must be used to keep the issue on the global agenda, maintain political commitment and monitor the implementation of commitments. The next CITES Conference of the Parties in September 2016 will be particularly important for this purpose (Objective 3.4).

3. Monitoring and evaluation

The Action Plan covers the five years from 2016 to 2020. The table in the Annex assigns each measure to an EU actor (the Commission services, the EEAS, Europol, Eurojust) and/or Member States and sets out a timeline for implementing them. The Commission services and the EEAS will establish a scoreboard to monitor implementation.

The EU Wildlife Trade Enforcement Group set up under Regulation (EC) 338/97 and consisting of representatives of EU Member States' enforcement authorities is to review progress twice a year. The Commission will report to the Council and the European Parliament by July 2018 on progress in implementing the Action Plan, and on whether its priorities and objectives are appropriate and relevant. Progress made and the success of the Action Plan in curbing wildlife trafficking will be evaluated in 2020. On that basis, the Commission will consider what further action is needed.

An Inter-Service Group within the Commission will coordinate activities across the areas concerned and ensure that all relevant Commission services and the EEAS perform their allotted tasks.

4. Links with other EU initiatives and policies

The Action Plan will supersede Commission Recommendation No 2007/425/EC identifying a set of actions for the enforcement of Regulation (EC) No 338/97 on the protection of species of wild fauna and flora by regulating trade therein.

The Action Plan will be implemented in such a way as to ensure consistency with existing EU policies with a bearing on the illegal trade in natural resources. These include the EU Action Plan on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT);the EU policy against Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing; and EU initiatives against trafficking in waste, drugs, counterfeit goods, firearms or human beings, money laundering and illicit financial flows.

ANNEX – Table of actions

Priority I – Preventing wildlife trafficking and addressing its root causes

Actions

Responsible

Expected results

Timeline

Objective 1.1

Reduce the demand for and supply of illegal wildlife products

1. Increase support for awareness- raising and targeted demand reduction campaigns in the EU and worldwide

COM/

HRVP 18 /

MS

Action taken and funding provided to raise awareness and reduce demand for illegal wildlife products in important non-EU countries and within the EU, notably for species illegally traded in large numbers within the EU

Continuous, with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM/

MS

Existing awareness-raising tools and materials shared among the Member States

End of 2016

2. Further limit trade in ivory within and from the EU

COM

Commission guidelines issued to ensure uniform interpretation of EU rules with the aim to suspend the export of raw pre-Convention ivory and guarantee that only legal ancient ivory items are traded in the EU

End of 2016

MS

Member States do not issue export and re-export documents for raw pre-Convention ivory

Member States only issue intra-EU trade certificates for ancient ivory items on the basis of the criteria defined in the guidelines

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

3. Reduce or ban unsustainable imports into the EU of endangered species by proposing their listing in CITES Appendices (e.g. rare reptile species)

COM

New listing proposals submitted for consideration by Conferences of the Parties (CoPs) of CITES

Continuous, with first milestone in April 2016

Objective 1.2

Ensure that rural communities in source countries are engaged in and benefit from wildlife conservation

4. Strengthen engagement of rural communities in the management and conservation of wildlife

COM/

MS

The need for proper engagement of rural communities in the design and implementation of measures against wildlife trafficking is made a priority in relevant EU and Member States policies and funding

Continuous, with first milestone at the end of 2016

5. Support the development of sustainable and alternative livelihoods for communities living in and adjacent to wildlife habitats

COM/

HRVP/

MS

Support to sustainable economic activities benefiting rural communities living in and adjacent to wildlife habitats is prioritised in EU and Member States' policies on funding support for rural areas in source countries

Continuous, with first milestone at the end of 2016

Objective 1.3

Increase business sector engagement in efforts to combat wildlife trafficking and encourage sustainable sourcing of wildlife products

6. Raise awareness of business sectors trading in wildlife products within/from the EU or facilitating such trade

COM

Main players in wildlife trade related business sectors identified at EU level and regular communication channels on wildlife trade issues set up between them and the Commission

End of 2016

COM

Sessions of the EU Wildlife Trade Enforcement Group organised with business players to discuss specific issues (e.g. Traditional Chinese Medicine, exotic pets, luxury industry, hunting tourism, transport, courier companies, online trade)

Continuous, with first milestone at the end of 2016

7. Support private-sector initiatives to curb the illegal wildlife trade and encourage sustainable sourcing of wildlife products in/from the EU

COM/

MS

Existing private-led initiatives and private-public partnerships supported and best practice shared to encourage new initiatives

End of 2017

Objective 1.4

Tackle corruption associated with wildlife trafficking

8. Support initiatives to fight the corruption associated with wildlife trafficking at national, regional and international levels

COM/

HRVP

Wildlife trafficking included in EU policy and tools against corruption (notably as part of dialogues with key third countries receiving budgetary support)

Continuous, with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM/

HRVP/

MS

Issue addressed in bilateral meetings with key partner countries and in relevant multilateral fora, including G7, G20, UN Convention against Corruption

Continuous, with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM/

MS

Relevant resolution proposal submitted for consideration by CITES 17th Conference of the Parties

April 2016

Priority 2 – Making implementation and enforcement of existing rules and the fight against organised wildlife crime more effective

Actions

Responsible

Expected results

Timeline

Objective 2.1: Ensure more even implementation of EU rules on the wildlife trade and develop a more strategic approach to checks and the enforcement of rules against wildlife trafficking at EU level

9. Develop strategies to improve compliance with EU wildlife legislation at national level

COM

Shortcomings in implementing EU wildlife trade regulations in each Member State assessed by the Commission and recommendations put forward on how to improve these shortcomings

End 2016

MS

Recommendations implemented in the Member States

2017

COM

Implementation of EU rules on importing hunting trophies in the EU proactively monitored, to ensure that such trophies are of legal and sustainable origin

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

10. Improve rate of detection of illegal activities

MS

In addition to the checks at border-crossing points required under Regulation (EC) No 338/97, in-country compliance monitoring and enforcement ensured, in particular through regular checks on traders and holders such as pet shops, breeders and nurseries

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

11. Step up efforts to ensure implementation of the EU roadmap towards eliminating the illegal killing, trapping and trade of birds (also relevant under Priority 1)  

COM

Funding provided for the Intergovernmental Task Force on the illegal killing of birds in the Mediterranean established under the Convention on Migratory Species and first meeting held

Mid-2016

COM/

MS

Action taken to improve national monitoring and enforcement of compliance

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

12. Define and assess priority risks regularly

MS

Enforcement priorities as regards target species and products (such as eels, ivory, rhino horns, live reptiles and birds), trade routes and smuggling methods defined at national level

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM/

Europol/MS

Based on common risk-based assessment of EU-wide priorities agreed at the EU Wildlife Trade Enforcement Group, in cooperation with Europol

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

13. Improve cooperation among Member States on cases of cross-border wildlife trafficking

COM/

Europol/Eurojust

Sufficient resources earmarked in Europol and Eurojust for work on wildlife trafficking

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

Europol/Eurojust/MS

Regular joint operations involving cross-border cooperation carried out by EU Member States (facilitated by Europol)

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

Europol/Eurojust/MS

Joint Investigation Teams involving Europol and/or Eurojust set up

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

14. Review the EU policy and legislative framework on environmental crime in line with the European Agenda on Security

COM

Effectiveness of Directive 2008/99 reviewed, including concerning the criminal sanctions applicable to wildlife trafficking throughout the EU

2016

Objective 2.2: Increase capacity to combat wildlife trafficking of all parts of the enforcement chain and the judiciary

15. Improve cooperation, coordination, communication and data flow between the enforcement agencies responsible in the Member States

MS

A coordination mechanism (such as an inter-agency task force and/or Memorandum of Understanding) between the relevant agencies (customs, inspection services, police, CITES management and enforcement authorities) is put in place in each Member State, and all the authorities with responsibility in this area have access to the relevant communication channels

Mid-2017

MS

Options for data exchange between the authorities responsible in this field under national legislation reviewed by Member States

Mid-2017

COM/

MS

Best practice for inter-agency cooperation and the effective monitoring and enforcement of compliance in the MS is collected and shared at EU level through the EU Wildlife Trade Enforcement Group

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

16. Improve knowledge base on checks, investigations, prosecutions and judicial proceedings against wildlife trafficking

MS

More systematic provision by Member States to the Commission of relevant qualitative and statistical data, including data on checks, investigations, seizures, prosecution cases and judgments, including the penalties imposed, and systematic information to Europol about all cases with organised crime and/or cross-border implications

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM/

MS

Data collection methodology in the field of wildlife trafficking streamlined throughout the EU and awareness raised in relevant expert groups on crime statistics

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM/

ENPE

Database containing case law on wildlife trafficking from Member States established at ENPE 19 to facilitate knowledge-sharing

Mid-2017

17. Step up training for all parts of the enforcement chain, including joint training activities

COM

Training on wildlife trafficking is included in the programme of EU training institutions such as CEPOL, ERA and others

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM/

MS

Existing training material is compiled and shared within the EU

End of 2016

COM

Training against wildlife trafficking eligible for funding support under the various relevant EU financial instruments (LIFE, Internal Security Fund, etc.)

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

MS

Training is regularly given in Member States for the entire enforcement/judiciary chain, including joint training sessions bringing together relevant enforcement agencies, prosecutors and judges

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

18. Strengthen or, where applicable, establish practitioner networks at national and regional level, and improve cooperation between them

MS

Establishment of relevant national networks supported in each Member State

Mid-2017

COM

Joint meetings of relevant EU networks 20 organised

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

19. Improve care of seized or confiscated live animals or plants

MS

Facilities are available in all Member States for temporary care of seized or confiscated live specimens, and mechanisms are in place for long-term rehoming, where necessary. Assistance is provided to other Member States.

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

Objective 2.3: Fight organised wildlife crime more effectively

20. Regularly assess the threat posed by organised wildlife trafficking in the EU

Europol

Serious and Organised Crime Threat Assessments (SOCTAs) include assessment of wildlife trafficking threat, based on data and, where possible, national threat assessments provided by Member States

Continuous with first milestone in the first half of 2017

21. Boost capacity of relevant experts to tackle the links of wildlife trafficking with organised crime, including cybercrime and related illicit financial flows

COM/

MS

Awareness-raising activities conducted in relevant fora (REFCO Network of Prosecutors specialised on organised crime, national organised crime, cybercrime and financial investigation units)

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

MS

Capacity built to tackle online wildlife trafficking within competent units and ensured that channels exist to trigger assistance from units specialised in cybercrime in specific cases (e.g. darkweb investigations, abuse of virtual currencies).

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM/

MS

Issue put on the agenda of the FATF 21 , of CARIN 22 and of the Egmont Group of Financial Intelligence Units

End of 2016

COM/

MS

FATF requested to prepare guidance on links between money laundering and wildlife trafficking

End of 2016

MS

Training on investigations into illicit financial flows related to wildlife trafficking organised

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

22. Member States ensure, in line with international commitments made, that organised wildlife trafficking constitutes throughout the EU a serious crime under the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, i.e. that it is punishable by imprisonment of a maximum of at least four years

MS

Relevant national legislation reviewed, and where necessary amended

End of 2017

23. Member States review, in line with UNGA Resolution, national legislation on money laundering to ensure that offences connected to wildlife trafficking can be treated as predicate offences and are actionable under domestic proceeds of crime legislation

MS

Relevant national legislation reviewed, and where necessary amended

End of 2017

Objective 2.4: Improve international cooperation on enforcement against wildlife trafficking

24. Step up cooperation on enforcement between the Member States and EU enforcement actors and key non-EU countries and other regional Wildlife Enforcement Networks, relevant global networks (International Consortium for Combating Wildlife Trafficking, ICCWC 23 , and the International Network for Environmental Compliance and Enforcement, INECE)

COM/

Europol

Joint meetings held involving Europol, the EU Wildlife Trade Enforcement Group and relevant regional enforcement networks (e.g. ASEAN-WEN and Lusaka Agreement Task Force) and the INECE.

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM

Best practice in enforcement cooperation shared

End 2016

MS/

Europol

Member States, assisted by Europol, participate in joint international law enforcement operations

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

25. Support capacity building for law enforcement in key source and market countries, including enforcement within protected sites

COM/

HRVP/

MS

Continued funding support provided for ICCWC activities, including evaluations of enforcement systems based on the ICCWC wildlife and forest crime Toolkit

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

COM/

HRVP/

MS

Results of ICCWC Toolkit recommendations taken into account in targeted support to third countries

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

Priority 3 - Strengthening the global partnership of source, consumer and transit countries against wildlife trafficking

Actions

Responsible

Expected results

Timeline

Objective 3.1:

Provide increased, more effective and more strategically focused support to developing countries

26. Ensure that wildlife trafficking is considered for EU funding under relevant programmes in the areas of natural resources management, environment, organised crime, security and governance

COM/

HRVP

"Strategic Approach for Wildlife Conservation in Africa" 24 serves as a basis for programming relevant development support

Further regional or thematic strategic approaches are developed

Development cooperation funding streams, including the European Development Fund (EDF), the Development Cooperation Instrument (DCI), the Instrument contributing to Stability and Peace, and other financial instruments such as the Partnership Instrument, are mobilised against wildlife trafficking, within the agreed financial envelopes of the contributing programs, and other possible funding sources are explored

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

27. Increase effectiveness of funding support against wildlife trafficking

COM/

HRVP/

MS

Regular meetings held in key countries to coordinate donor activities

Beneficiary countries asked to report on how the measures against wildlife trafficking funded by the EU have been effective in addressing the problem (using indicators such as the number of seizures and successful prosecutions)

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016 

Objective 3.2

Strengthen and coordinate better action against wildlife trafficking and its root causes with relevant source, transit and market countries

28. Step up dialogue with key source, transit and market countries, including dialogue with local communities, civil society and the private sector

COM/

HRVP/

MS

Priority countries identified

Specific dialogue and technical cooperation structures established

Topic systematically included in the agenda of political and sectorial dialogues and of high-level meetings with key non-EU countries or regions

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

HRVP/

MS

Network of focal points in delegations and embassies in relevant countries set up, making use, where appropriate, of existing structures such as the Green Diplomacy Network

End of 2016

29. Use EU trade policies and instruments proactively to support action against wildlife trafficking

COM/

HRVP

Ambitious commitments to combat wildlife trafficking proposed by the EU for inclusion in future Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) e.g. with Japan and the USA (Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership – TTIP)

Proactive monitoring of the implementation of commitments associated with wildlife trafficking included in existing FTAs and the GSP+ regime

Wildlife trafficking included on the agenda of EU bilateral trade dialogues with key partners and of the WTO Committee on Trade and Environment

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

30. Strengthen cooperation against wildlife trafficking with relevant regional organisations, such as the African Union, SADC, the East African Community, ASEAN, and in relevant multilateral fora, such as ASEM

COM/

HRVP

Topic included regularly on the agenda of high-level meetings

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

Objective 3.3

Address security dimension of wildlife trafficking

31. Improve knowledge base and develop strategies to tackle the links between wildlife trafficking and security

COM/

HRVP

Study launched to improve knowledge base on links between wildlife trafficking and other forms of organised crime and financing for militias or terrorist groups.

Mid-2016

COM/

HRVP/

MS

Based on the results, next steps agreed in relevant EU fora

Mid-2017

COM/

HRVP/

MS

Security dimension of wildlife trafficking considered in overall EU situational assessments for relevant non-EU countries

End of 2016 

HRVP/

MS

UN-EU cooperation on the illegal wildlife trade in the context of peacekeeping and crisis management stepped up

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

Objective 3.4

Strengthen multilateral efforts to combat wildlife trafficking

32. Support the adoption and implementation of strong decisions, resolutions and political declarations on wildlife trafficking in international instruments and multilateral fora

COM/

HRVP/

MS

Issue addressed under

CITES – including, where necessary, through support for trade sanctions in cases of non-compliance

Convention on Migratory Species - Tunis Action Plan 2013-2020 on the eradication of illegal killing, trapping and trade of wild birds under the Berne Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats

Relevant multilateral initiatives at global level (UN, London and Kasane follow-up processes, G7, G20 etc.)

Implementation of commitments made in these fora regularly monitored by the EU and its Member States

Continuous with first milestone at the end of 2016

(1)

     Defined as international and non-international illegal trade in wild animals and plants and derived products, and closely interlinked offences such as poaching.

(2)

      https://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/frontpage/2014/May/wildlife-crime-worth-8-10-billion-annually.html

https://cites.org/eng/international_dimension_of_illegal_wildlife_trade   http://www.gfintegrity.org/report/briefing-paper-transnational-crime/

(3)

     The Staff Working Document accompanying this Communication (SWD(2016) 38) shows in greater detail the scale of wildlife trafficking worldwide and the EU's role in the illegal trade.

(4)

     See SWD(2016) 38

(5)

     See SWD(2016) 38

(6)

     Resolution 2134 (2014) and 2136 (2014); "Report of the Secretary-General on the situation in Central Africa and the activities of the United Nations Regional Office for Central Africa", 30 November 2015

(7)

     Resolution 69/314

(8)

      https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/417231/kasane-statement-150325.pdf  

(9)

      https://www.g7germany.de/Content/EN/_Anlagen/G7/2015-06-08-g7-abschluss-eng_en.pdf?__blob=publicationFile&v=3 , p. 11.

(10)

     Target 15.7.

(11)

     Cf. European Parliament Resolution of 15 January 2014 (2013/2747(RSP)).

(12)

     See COM (2014) 64 and SWD (2014) 347.

(13)

     Council Regulation (EC) 338/97. 

(14)

     OJ L 159, 20.6.2007, p. 45–47

(15)

     See SWD(2016) 38

(16)

     See COM (2015) 497, Trade for all – towards a more responsible trade and investment policy

(17)

     See SWD(2016) 38

(18)

     High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs & Security Policy / Vice-President of the European Commission. 

(19)

     European Network of Prosecutors for the Environment

(20)

     Such as EU Wildlife Trade Enforcement Group, European Network of Prosecutors for the Environment ENPE, European Forum of Judges for the Environment EUFJE, IMPEL, Project Group for the Coordination of activities on the protection of Health, Cultural Heritage and the Environment PARCS, EnviCrimeNet.

(21)

     Financial Action Task Force

(22)

     Camden Assets Recovery Interagency Network

(23)

     Comprising Interpol, the CITES Secretariat, the World Customs Organisation, UNODC and the World Bank.

(24)

     Larger than elephants - Inputs for an EU strategic approach to wildlife conservation in Africa – Synthesis, Publications Office of the European Union, 2015

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