French container shipping line CMA CGM is joining the fight to stop illicit trafficking of protected species.
As part of new tighter procedures, shippers must expressly state whether a species is covered by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) convention and, where appropriate, provide the requisite export permit whenever any animal or plant goods are carried. In parallel, CMA CGM will draw up a black list of exporters suspected to be involved in illicit trafficking.
Also announced yesterday, following several suspicions that undeclared rosewood may have been part of cargo shipments from the Gambia, CMA CGM has decided to halt its timber exports from the country until further notice. Rosewood is a protected species, and trade in it is regulated by the CITES. This highly sought-after wood is felled illegally in the region and then exported under various different guises. This illicit trade is heavily implicated in the deforestation of West Africa.
CMA CGM said it had taken the new measures in order to help conserve global biodiversity and not to further imperil the planet’s future.