- She said the Department of National Parks would also need to explore alternative legal means of trading in ivory if all attempts to down-list and trade fail by engaging stakeholders internally and with range states within SADC.
By PETER SICHALI
GOVERNMENT will consider submitting another proposal to down-list the elephant population from endangered species to secure permission for the sale of ivory worth more than $100 million, Tourism and Arts Permanent Secretary Auxillia Ponga has said.
Dr Ponga said there was also need for increased budgetary allocation for an effective communications and lobbying strategy in preparation for the conference of parties in 2022.
She said the Department of National Parks would also need to explore alternative legal means of trading in ivory if all attempts to down-list and trade fail by engaging stakeholders internally and with range states within SADC.
Dr Ponga said the proposal should provide a convincing case of how the sale of ivory stockpiles Zambia had been stuck with for years would support conservation and improve livelihoods of communities living in Game Management Areas.
“In order to seek support from parties, the ministry though DNPW will develop a communication and lobbying strategy in readiness for CoP19 if a down listing proposal is to be submitted,” she said.
She said Zambia will seek the support from elephant range states, the United States of America, potential consumer states such as China and Japan, regional economic blocs such as the European Union and BRICS (Brazil, Russia, China and South Africa).
Dr Ponga said the country was also considering carrying out a market research on potential buyers, despite the calls by CITES to close down domestic ivory measures.
“CITES does not have the mandate of domestic trade and regulates international trade. However, any potential buyer would not be able to export the ivory due to CITES restrictions,” she said.
Dr Ponga said it would require a review of domestic legislation and putting in place mechanisms for legal trade.