As an American charity, Active for Animals is delighted that the United States is one of the CITES signatory countries to have implemented a modern permit system. As a wealthy country, we need to support regions in the global South to protect their wild species. Currently only 3 countries in continental Africa (DRC, Uganda and Mozambique) have CITES electronic permits. South Africa launched an eCITES system on the 1st of April 2023, though this has yet to be formally announced by the CITES.
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen recently announced a new joint U.S. – South African task force on wildlife trafficking to “follow the money” from poaching and then work to seize proceeds from any illegal sales. To ensure the success of this new project it is now even more critical to invest in decoupling the legal and illegal trade.
With this letter to President Biden, Active for Animals has requested the U.S. government considers covering the cost of implementing the CITES electronic permit system throughout continental Africa. At the latest Conference of the Parties (CoP19), CITES urged all parties to the convention to implement electronic permit systems and for developing countries to ask donor countries for financial assistance to do this.
In the letter to President Biden, Active for Animals has requested that the U.S. Government, via USAid, covers the cost of implementing the eCITES BaseSolution in all remaining 49 CITES signatory countries in continental Africa.
So just how much would this cost for these 49 countries?
Initial implementation, training and support & hosting for 12 months: 49 x US$150,000 = US$7,350,000
Add another 2 years of support & hosting (until we reach an economy of scale when it will be much cheaper) 49 x US$40,000 x 2 = US$3,920,000