China raises concerns against US’ environmental disregards » Capital News
A male pangolin found in Taimushan town of Fuding, a county-level city in Fujian province, was released in good physical condition. [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
China raised serious concerns and has lodged solemn representations to the United States which claimed that Chinese nationals are “diminishing the effectiveness” of an international convention on endangered wildlife through doing pangolin business.
On Saturday, China’s National Forestry and Grassland Administration said in a statement that the US disregarded the significant efforts and achievements made by China in protecting the pangolin worldwide.
On Friday, US Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland notified the US Congress that she had issued a finding that nationals of the People’s Republic of China are diminishing the effectiveness of Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora by engaging in trade or taking of pangolin species.
The NFGA said that the US action represents another example of its abuse of extraterritorial jurisdiction and goes against the principles of objectivity and fairness, extremely undermining global cooperation in pangolin conservation.
“As the leading agency responsible for implementing CITES, the NFGA expresses serious concerns about the US move and strongly opposes any attempt to damage China’s reputation in pangolin protection,” it said, adding that China has already lodged a solemn representation with the US and will continue to do so.
In the past decade, the Chinese government has strengthened the protection of endangered wildlife and plants, achieving noteworthy historical accomplishments, said the statement.
In 2020, all species of pangolin were identified as national first-class protected wildlife, it said, noting that in the same year, the Pangolin Conservation Research Center was established to enhance rescue, breeding and field research of pangolins.
“The Chinese government has issued notices to further strengthen pangolin conservation, intensifying the protection and monitoring of pangolin populations and their habitats in the wild, and strictly prohibiting hunting and consumption of pangolins, which effectively has promoted the recovery of wild pangolin populations in China,” the administration said.
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Furthermore, China has fulfilled its obligations under CITES by ceasing commercial import and export activities of pangolins and their derivatives, said the statement, adding that the country has established an inter-ministerial joint meeting mechanism consisting of 27 departments to combat the illegal trading of wildlife.
The NFGA stressed that, for over a decade, China has provided continuous capacity-building support in the wildlife protection to countries where pangolins live, collaborating with Asian and African countries to carry out a series of actions against illegal wildlife trade.
China has made significant contributions to strengthening global pangolin conservation and combating illegal wildlife trade, and has been recognized with numerous awards, such as the certificates of commendation from the Secretary-General of CITES, the Asian Environmental Enforcement Awards, and the Clark R. Bavin Wildlife Law Enforcement Awards, it said, adding that these achievements should not be discredited.
“China will further enhance cooperation with the international community, take proactive and practical actions, and play a greater role in the protection of endangered wildlife, including pangolins,” said the statement.
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