HL Deb 20 July 1994 vol 557 cc40-2WA
Viscount Davidson

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What is the purpose of the forthcoming meeting in Botswana on the African elephant and which countries have been invited.

The Earl of Arran

At the last meeting of the conference of the parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in Kyoto in March 1992, the then President of the EC Environment Council urged that there should be more intersessional dialogue between parties on controversial issues including that of the elephant and the rhino. Since then, the European Union has been exploring the possibility of such a dialogue between the main countries concerned with the status of the African elephant. After widespread consultation among African and other governments, including an exploratory mission, the EU has concluded that there is an opportunity for such dialogue.

The meeting is being arranged in Botswana in September this year, and a list of those invited follows:


  • Botswana
  • Burkina Faso
  • Cameroon
  • Central African Republic
  • Congo
  • Ethiopia
  • Gabon
  • Ghana
  • Kenya
  • Malawi
  • Mali
  • Namibia
  • Nigeria
  • South Africa
  • Sudan
  • Tanzania
  • Togo
  • Uganda
  • Zaire
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Rest of World

  • France
  • Germany
  • Japan
  • United Kingdom
  • United States of America
  • European Commission

In addition, representatives of CITES, UNEP, the World Conservation Union (IUCN). and a small number of expert advisers have been invited.

The aim of the meeting is to exchange information and to discuss positions of the countries involved. It is not to make resolutions or to pre-empt discussions at the wider meeting of the CITES Conference of the Parties. The United Kingdom is taking the lead in organising the meeting, on behalf of the European Union and in consultation with the Presidency.