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Remarks About The Cites Compliance Regime

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Chapter Summary

From a compliance point of view, CITES is unusual among multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs). One seeking an introduction to the CITES compliance regime needs to piece together various articles of the Convention, as well as decades of practice reflected in various resolutions and decisions of the Parties and subsidiary bodies. A useful way to approach the subject is to examine the following aspects: the basic features of the treaty itself, both obligations and compliance-related provisions; selected compliance/implementation problems to date; various compliance-related steps that the Parties and CITES institutions have taken; and certain ways in which the CITES compliance regime compares with other MEAs. CITES was adopted in 1973, making it one of the earlier environmental agreements. Its purpose was to establish a system to control the international trade in species that are, or may be, in danger of becoming extinct as a result of that trade.

Keywords: CITES compliance regime; environmental agreements; international trade; multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs)



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