Delegation of the European Union to Myanmar

Local EU Statement on Ending Illegal Wildlife Trade

Yangon, 27/02/2018 - 12:20, UNIQUE ID: 180227_7
Local Statements

Wildlife trafficking has become one of the most profitable criminal activities worldwide, with devastating effects for biodiversity, and very damaging impact on sustainable development and poverty eradication, as well as the rule of law due to its close links with corruption. Ending wildlife trafficking is a shared responsibility, and we must all take concrete action.

The European Union (EU) Delegation issues the following statement in agreement with the EU Heads of Mission in Myanmar:

On the occasion of World Wildlife Day on 3 March 2018, we, the undersigned Ambassadors of the European Union and its Member States, wish to congratulate the Government of Myanmar for the initiatives taken to protect the magnificent natural heritage of this country, including initiatives aimed at the conservation of endangered wildlife. 

Wildlife trafficking has become one of the most profitable criminal activities worldwide, with devastating effects for biodiversity, and very damaging impact on sustainable development and poverty eradication, as well as the rule of law due to its close links with corruption.

Ending wildlife trafficking is a shared responsibility, and we must all take concrete action. Since 2016, the European Union (EU) and its Member States have ramped up their actions for strengthening the EU's role in the global fight against these illegal activities through greater enforcement of our comprehensive legal framework, better cooperation, and more effective prevention.

As mentioned above, the Government of Myanmar is also acting and has taken a range of initiatives which include the strengthening of the Biodiversity and Protected Areas Law, the establishment of more than 40 protected areas, the development of action plans for elephants and tigers, the training and deployment of rangers, and the ongoing wildlife training for Government staff on illegal wildlife. These steps are commendable and the European Union and its Member States are proud to have supported some of these efforts through provision of technical support and capacity building activities for example.  

However, elephant poaching for ivory and other parts is still a huge challenge globally with Myanmar facing an unprecedented elephant skinning crisis which threatens to wipe out its wild elephant population in a matter of years.

Therefore, we would also like to take this opportunity to urge the Government of Myanmar to strengthen efforts to tackle this crisis. In particular, we would recommend that the Government of Myanmar ends the open sale of elephant and other illegal wildlife parts, which today are widely sold in markets in Yangon, Mandalay, Kyeikhteeyoe and along Myanmar’s borders. As long as these markets continue to sell illegal wildlife products, Myanmar’s wildlife is at risk, and Myanmar’s position as a global and regional illegal wildlife trade hub will continue and grow as other countries in the region close their domestic markets. China ended its domestic ivory market from January this year and Hong Kong has also committed to ban ivory trading.

Concrete action, such as developing a more robust legal framework in line with global standards - and ensuring its effective enforcement - would send a clear message that Myanmar has a zero-tolerance approach to wildlife crime.  

We encourage the Government of Myanmar to take action now so that Myanmar can attend the 2018 London Conference on Illegal Wildlife Trade in October, not only ready to renew its commitments to the 2014 London Declaration on the Illegal Wildlife Trade, but also to take up its place as a regional leader in the fight against the illegal wildlife trade. 

 

H.E. Mr. Kristian Schmidt
Head of Delegation/Ambassador
Delegation of the European Union

H.E. Mrs. Eva Hager
Ambassador
Embassy of Austria

H.E. Mr. Philippe Krikelka
Ambassador
Embassy of Belgium

H.E. Mr. Evgueni Stefanov Stoytchev
Ambassador
Embassy of Bulgaria

H.E. Mr. Demetrios A. Theophylactou
High Commissioner
Cyprus High Commission

H.E. Mr. Jaroslav Doleček
Ambassador
Embassy of the Czech Republic

H.E. Mr. Kreso Glavac
Ambassador
Embassy of Croatia

H.E. Mr. Peter Lysholt Hansen
Ambassador
Embassy of Denmark

H.E. Mr. Riho Kruuv
Ambassador
Embassy of Estonia

H.E. Mrs Riikka Laatu
Ambassador
Embassy of Finland

H.E. Mr. Olivier Richard
Ambassador
Embassy of France

H.E. Mrs. Dorothee Janetzke-Wenzel
Ambassador
Embassy of Germany

H.E. Mr. Pericles Boutos
Ambassador
Embassy of Greece

H.E. Mr Peter Jakab
Ambassador
Embassy of Hungary

H.E. Mr. Mr. BRENDAN ROGERS
Ambassador
Embassy of Ireland

H.E. Mr. Pier Giorgio Aliberti
Ambassador
Embassy of Italy

H.E. Ms. Ina Marciulionyte
Ambassador
Embassy of Lithuania

H.E. Mr. Robert Lauer
Ambassador
Embassy of Luxembourg

H.E. Mr. Wouter Jurgens
Ambassador
Embassy of the Kingdom of Netherlands

H.E. Mr. Waldemar Dubaniowski
Ambassador
Embassy of Poland

H.E. Mr. Franciso Vaz Patto
Ambassador
Embassy of Portugal

H.E. Mr. Bogdan Badea
Ambassador
Embassy of Romania

H.E. Mr. Stanislav Opielą
Ambassador
Embassy of Slovak Republic

H.E. Mr. Emilio de Miguel Calabia
Ambassador
Embassy of Spain

H.E. Mr. Mr Staffan Herrström
Ambassador
Embassy of Sweden

H.E. Mr. Mr. Andrew Patrick
Ambassador
Embassy of United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland

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Press contact:

Ms Valerie ZIRL
Public Diplomacy Adviser
EU Delegation to Myanmar
Email: valerie.zirl@eeas.europa.eu
Mobile: +95-92-6114 9098

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