Representatives from 182 member countries of the Convention of International Trade in Endangered Species of wild fauna and flora (CITES) are gathering at the 17 th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (CoP17) in Johannesburg, South Africa from September 24 to October 5.
Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Ha Cong Tuan led the Vietnamese delegation to the event.
In his opening speech, South African President Jacob Zuma highly valued participating countries’ proposals on measures to control wildlife trading, saying that wildlife poaching and trafficking have affected nearly 500 species, especially rare wild animals such as elephant, rhino and lion in Africa and other places in the world.
The President has called on the international community, especially CITES member states to discuss and put forth urgent and effective protection measures for rare and valuable fauna and flora species in Africa and the world in the coming time.
Addressing the event, Head of the Vietnamese delegation Ha Cong Tuan said after more than two decades of joining the CITES, Vietnam has made positive contributions to the international organisation. In free trade agreements it has signed, the country always commits to addressing the wildlife trafficking.
The country has inked cooperation agreements on the issue with many countries, including China, Laos, Cambodia, South Africa and Indonesia.
With its efforts made over the past ten years, Vietnam has succeeded in cutting the demand for rhino horns, with a reduction of 38 percent in three recent years, he said, stressing that the Government has pledged to eradicate illegal wild animal trading, as well as combat all wildlife-related crimes.
On the occasion, the Deputy Minister informed that Vietnam will host the 17th and 18th international wildlife trade conference (IWTC) in Hanoi this November.