Accompanied by the forestry engineering firm FRMi, ATIBT participated in the 69th meeting of the CITES Standing Committee held in Geneva from 27 November to 1 December 2017. CITES is the Convention on International Trade in Species Endangered Species (Wild Fauna and Flora), signed by more than 180 states. It regulates trade for »specimens » of a list of species considered as threatened and classified in the 3 Appendices of the Convention. The Standing Committee is one of the decision-making bodies, the others are the Conference of the Parties and the Plants Committee and the Animals Committee.
ATIBT wished to follow the discussions held within CITES, because of the implications they may have on the tropical timber industry. The issues of this meeting of the Standing Committee on Tropical Timber focused mainly on the implementation of the decisions made at the last Conference of the Parties (COP 17), the classification in Appendix II of so-called « rosewood » species (designation unfortunately far too broad and unsuitable), including all species of the genus Dalbergia, Guibourtia demeusei (Bubinga, also called Ebana), Guibourtia pellegriniana and Guibourtia tessmannii (Bubinga, also called Kevazingo) and Pterocarpus erinaceus (Vene, also called Kosso).
In addition, a recommendation has been adopted for the management of stocks and the regulation of the international transport of musical instruments containing timber species, all of whose products have recently been covered by the CITES Appendix II classification. The implementation of this CITES decision raises a number of difficulties that could lead the musical instruments sector to abandon tropical timber.
In parallel, a study should be carried out by the CITES Secretariat on species of the following genera, with a view to a possible classification in Appendix II of new species at COP 18 in 2019:
We draw the attention of users and distributors to the fact that this list of timber species is just under study. These species should not be considered as endangered species until the results of the study. ATIBT will soon approach the producers to collect all the information (inventories, study of forest dynamics, etc.) useful to emit an argumentative position.
The Standing Committee also dealt with the application of Annex XIII of the Convention by the DRC (Democratic Republic of Congo) and made two recommendations concerning Pericopsis elata (Afrormosia), on export monitoring and on the conversion factor, for this quota monitoring, of volumes of products converted into Roundwood Equivalent volumes.