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Published by: simon_kun on Mar 30, 2009
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National Wildlife Trade Policy Review

Madagascar ratified the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna
and Flora (CITES) in 1975. A rudimentary wildlife trade policy, however, was in place in
Madagascar well before this date.

The history of international wildlife trade management in Madagascar can be divided into four
\u25aa Aphase which preceded the ratification of the Convention and consisted in local
management centred mostly on fauna (1960-1975);
\u25aa The second, start-up phase, after the ratification of the Convention, during which CITES
regulations were poorly understood and only partially applied (1975-1990);
\u25aa Aphase greatly influenced by the new environmental policy (1990-2002);
\u25aa The last phase, during which the Malagasy authorities took the initiative to implement
CITES with adequate management tools (2003 - until now).

Although legislative and regulatory texts existed throughout these different phases, the extent to
which their application was in line with the objectives set by CITES should be brought into
question. A national wildlife trade policy review is extremely appropriate for this purpose; hence
Madagascar\u201fs decision to participate in the UNEP/CITES initiative.

The findings of this project concern the general context of the national policy, its content and
implementation, as well as some issues related to the qualitative assessment of the policy. The
review reveals numerous gaps in the understanding of CITES, in its implementation and in relations
between stakeholders. A lack of political will on the part of the Malagasy authorities is one of the
main issues raised.

We would like to make the following recommendations:
- Ensuring the participation of all stakeholders from the authorities to the local communities;
- Setting up a clearing house and a steering committee to support the implementation of

- Redirecting research and studies;
- Securing long-term funding for the system;

- Implementing regulatory legislative texts;
- Improving the control and communication system; and
- Finalizing incomplete activities from the 2003 action plan.

The first initiative to conduct a national wildlife policy review was taken by UNEP-UNCTAD
CBTF, CITES and GIDS and funded by the European Union and the Geneva International
Academic Network. Its implementation in the country was fully approved by Madagascar\u201fs CITES
Management Authority and its Scientific Authorities which are responsible for managing the
implementation of CITES in Madagascar and are, therefore, fully-fledged actors in this policy, with
the support of the CITES Secretariat in Geneva.

A number of national institutions and experts had to be mobilized in order to conduct this policy
review. Thanks to a significant joint effort, it was possible to gather the necessary information and
compile it in the present form.

Most of the institutions which were asked to contribute agreed to do so, thereby showing their
interest in a review of Madagascar\u201fs national wildlife trade policy. Very useful data and information
were provided by officials from public institutions, governmental and non-governmental
organizations as well as Malagasy scientists, sometimes in a private capacity, known for their
knowledge of Madagascar\u201fs wildlife trade.

In view of the wide scope of wildlife trade, the contributions made concerned different disciplines and sectors. The review team would like to express their sincere gratitude to all those who helped to bring this review of Madagascar\u201fs national wildlife trade policy through to a successful conclusion.

The following persons and institutions provided the data on the basis of which the review was

- Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries
- Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry
- Ministry of National Defence
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs
- Ministry of Justice


- L\u201fObservatoire National de l\u201fEnvironnement et du Secteur Forestier (National environmental
and forestry sector observatory)
- Customs
- National police
- National gendarmerie
- Interpol
- Veterinary department
- Fishing department
- Phytosanitary and plant protection department
- Silo National des Graines Foresti\u00e8res (SNGF) (National tree seed centre)
- Parc Botanique et Zoologique de Tsimbazaza (PBZT) (Botanical and zoological park of


- Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust (DWCT)
- The Peregrine Fund
- Conservation International (CI)
- Missouri Botanical Garden (MBG)
- Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS)
- World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF)
- Royal Botanical Gardens of Kew (RBG)

- World Bank

- Faculty of Sciences of the University of Antananarivo
- Department of Water and Forests at the School of Agronomic Sciences\u2013 University of

This review would not have been possible without the agreement of the Ministry of Environment,
Water, Forests, and Tourism and the General Directorate for Environment, Water and Forests.
The authors would like to thank all of the above.

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