Asian delegates meets to discuss on ensuring legal, sustainable and traceable trade of medicinal plants

CITES meeting (Photo Courtesy: Choidup Zangpo, ICS)

Delegates from eight Asian Countries came together in a three-day Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) regional workshop last week to discuss about ensuring legal, sustainable and traceable trade in medicinal plants.

Speaking to some 30  representatives of scientific and management authorities from the countries of Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, India, Indonesia, Myanmar, Nepal and Sri Lanka at the Convention centre in Thimphu, the agriculture and forests minister Lyonpo (Dr.) Pema Gyamtsho, said “This workshop will focus on three key elements of trade in medicinal plants”, adding that the legality aspect will make the trade legal, transparent and beneficial to all, while sustainability will make the benefits long-term.

The regional workshop was brought to Bhutan with the objective to examine means for ensuring that international trade in selected Asian medicinal plan species is legal, sustainable and traceable. The workshop also aimed to initiate cooperation among range States, consumer States and relevant organizations and identify examples of good practice.

Over the last three days, delegates delved on how to achieve legal, sustainable and traceable trade in medicinal plants, the number of species of plants available in the region, their treatment in sync with government policies, measures initiated, studies and researches conducted, market and trading methods.

The workshop also saw participants discussing on range state, consumer state, traditional medicine association and traffic perspectives on the management of trade in medicinal plants.

The delegates presented individual country report on achieving legal, sustainable and traceable trace in medicinal plants.

As resolved in Doha conference two years ago, the workshop developed recommendations to ensure the implementation of regionally coordinated actions to improve the management of medicinal plant species in the region. The workshop also came up with report and recommendations to CITES bodies on medicinal plant species.

The findings and recommendations of the workshop will be submitted at the CITES Conference of parties 16 to be held in Bangkok sometime in March 2013.

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