EIA today joined with 22 other NGOs in call to delegates of next week’s 3rd Asia Ministerial Conference on Tiger Conservation to commit to a policy pursuing zero demand for tiger parts and products.
As delegates prepare for the 3rd Asia Ministerial Conference on Tiger Conservation, from April 12-14 in New Delhi, we the undersigned urge Ministers to make a commitment at this meeting to Zero Demand for tiger parts in order to achieve Zero Poaching.
Conservation successes are happening in Tiger Range Countries with strong laws and where wild tigers are valued for the role they play in the ecosystem, compared to those Tiger Range Countries where ‘tiger farming’ exists and where they are valued as a commodity.
It is time for Tiger Range Countries to unite in a commitment to end tiger farming and to end all domestic and international trade in parts and derivatives of tigers from captive facilities.
Many facilities that keep tigers are engaged in legal and illegal trade, both domestic and international, in parts and derivatives of tigers. There are an estimated 7,000 tigers in captivity in so-called tiger farms in South-East Asia and China – and no signs that they are being phased out.
The Government of China has authorised a domestic trade in the skins of captive-bred tigers for use as luxury home décor and for taxidermy. This stimulates demand and increases pressure on the world’s remaining 3,200 wild tigers instead of reducing it. How can we expect demand-reduction campaigns to work in China if the Government itself tells consumers that it is acceptable to buy tiger skins?
Tigers in India, Nepal, Bangladesh and the Russian Far East are still being targeted for markets in China and for Chinese consumers in Myanmar and Lao PDR. There is also a thriving market in Vietnam and Indonesia. Tigers are not just killed for their skins; their bones are used to brew ‘tiger bone wine’, their meat is sold as a delicacy and their teeth and claws are sold as charms.
We collectively call on the 3rd Asian Ministerial Conference on Tigers to urge countries with facilities which keep or breed tigers for trade to demonstrate genuine commitment to tiger conservation by:
- including a commitment to work towards Zero Demand in the concluding Declaration of the 3rd Asian Ministerial Conference on Tigers;
- improving enforcement against captive facilities engaged in illegal trade in tiger parts and derivatives;
- prohibiting legal domestic trade in tiger parts and derivatives from captive facilities;
- stopping further breeding to phase out tiger farms;
- destroying stockpiles of tiger parts and derivatives.
21st Century Tiger
Big Cat Rescue
Bombay Natural History Society
Born Free Foundation
Born Free USA
Conservation Action Trust
David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation
Environmental Investigation Agency
Nature Conservation Society, Amravati
Save Wild Tigers
The Corbett Foundation
The Fund for the Tiger
Tiger Research And Conservation Trust
Wildlife Friends Foundation Thailand
Wildlife Protection Society of India
Wildlife SOS India
Learn more about the issue of captive tigers in this EIA info-poster here