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India exempted from global body’s review obligation on red sanders


Red-Sanders
The decision on exemption follows the recently concluded meeting of the CITES standing committee on wild fauna and flora in Geneva, Switzerland. India has been a party to CITES since 1976. NEW DELHI:  India has been excluded from the ‘Review of Significant Trade’ (RST) for Red Sanders, under Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). This exclusion from review will now enable farmers cultivating Red Sanders to augment their income via cultivation and export.

The tree is endemic to a few districts of Andhra Pradesh in India. The decision on exemption follows the recently concluded meeting of the CITES standing committee on wild fauna and flora in Geneva, Switzerland. India has been a party to CITES since 1976. The ‘Review of Significant Trade’ allowed the suspension of Red Sanders trade with India and imposed heightened scrutiny of species exports from the country to ensure the proper implementation of the convention’s regulations.

Due to its high market value, the Red Sanders species has been listed as Appendix II under CITES since 1994, facing threats of illegal harvesting and smuggling, leading to depletion from natural forests. Environmentalists raised complaints about Indian timber traders illegally exporting wild Red Sanders. Consequently, CITES subjected Red Sanders to the RST process from 2004.

India’s consistent compliance with the administrative and regulatory system of CITES, coupled with regular reporting, has warranted its removal from the RST. What does the ‘review’ of trade signify? The ‘Review of Signficant Trade’ allowed the suspension of Red Sanders (Pterocarpus santalinus) trade with India and imposed heightened scrutiny on export of the species from the country, to ensure the proper implementation of the convention’s regulations. (THE NEW INDIAN EXPRESS)