Panama landscape

Panama to host the 19th meeting of the Conference of the Parties of CITES

Panama was recently selected as the host of the 19th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES CoP19), taking place this upcoming November.  

Occurring every two to three years, CoP19 provides an opportunity for members of CITES to meet and ensure that wild animals and plants are protected in international trade policies. During the conference, participants review progress made towards protecting species, consider any proposals to amend the list of protected species and work to improve the effectiveness of convention in safeguarding species from exploitation.  

Panama is committed to continuing working for the conservation of wildlife by implementing a series of initiatives to protect marine life and terrestrial animals. Conscious that our country has a greater number of vertebrate animals than any other country in Central America or the Caribbean, and that our waters host a wide variety of species, we are proud to host the upcoming CoP19 and strengthen the efforts of CITES for the global benefit.  

Members of CITES agreed during their informal meeting of the CITES Standing Committee on the proposal from the Panamanian Government, where CITES Secretary-General Ivonne Higuero notably said that the organization “is extremely grateful to the government of Panama for their offer to host the 19th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties.” Secretary-General Higuero continued, “We thank them [Panama] for their support to this essential gathering for the updating and reinforcement of the Convention. Given the difficulties we are experiencing because of the pandemic, this is optimistic news for global environmental governance. CITES is an important part of this, as is the smooth organization of the Meeting of the Conference of the Parties. The Secretariat will do its utmost to support Parties in their preparations for the meeting, which is central to the fulfillment of their mandates of ensuring the conservation and sustainable use of listed species of wild fauna and flora.” 

This will be the fourth meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CITES held in Central and South America and the Caribbean since CITES came into force on 1 July 1975, but it will be the first held in the region since 2002.

To read more on Panama’s conservation and sustainability efforts, visit our Boldy Sustainable page.