14 December 2015
There have been instances where some companies have tried to import these species of coral from the identified countries which has led to them being seized.
All import suspensions were adopted following a ‘negative opinion’ from the EU’s CITES Scientific Review Group (SRG), which could not conclude that imports into the EU would be non-detrimental to the conservation of the species in the wild. A negative opinion means that ‘the information available is insufficient to form a positive opinion on an application and/or the given current or anticipated levels of trade so that the introduction into the European Community might have a harmful effect on the conservation status of the species or on the extent of the territory occupied by the relevant population of the species’.
In all cases, exporting countries were consulted and asked whether they could share with the EU the ‘non detriment finding’ (NDF) made by their CITES scientific authority. Unfortunately, in all these cases, the Commission either did not receive a response or received insufficient information to enable the SRG to adopt a positive opinion.
The EC remains open to work with exporting countries’ CITES authorities to look into these various cases should their scientific authority have made a recent NDF that the SRG should be aware of.
So if your company is in contact with the respective exporting country’s CITES authorities and/or has some scientific data to share, please let us know so we can make the information available to the European Commission.