If you are not a breeder or a trader but your profession involves you working with species protected by CITES, some provisions may apply to your professional activities.

Provisions relating to the CITES legislation concern:

Zoos, botanical gardens, museums, universities or similar establishments

Except establishments that are considered to be “scientific institutions”, all sectors of activity that display live or dead specimens to the public with paid admissions are considered to be engaging in commercial activities and must therefore comply with all of the provisions relating to sale or to purchase.

In fact, any exchange, purchase or sale with another institution requires CITES permits.

In Belgium, scientific institutions are approved by the Belgian CITES Management Authority in consultation with the Belgian scientific committee. These institutions frequently participate in educational programmes or are involved in captive breeding, artificial propagation or research programmes for the conservation of certain species.

Circuses, travelling exhibitions/fairs, menageries, collections of plants or commercial samples

CITES animals or plants kept in the context of these activities make numerous and regular trips within the Union and to and from the Union.

For this reason, in place of the usual import/export permits, these species and specimens are covered by the following documents:

- a travelling exhibition certificate for specimens for display to the public. This concerns, for example, circus specimens, orchid collections, presentations of hunting with CITES birds of prey and collections of ivory pieces.

This certificate (which is yellow) avoids applying for CITES documents on border crossing to or from the European Union; indeed, it replaces a Member State’s import permit, export permit and re-export certificate, and the intra-Community certificates for the exhibition for commercial purposes.

Attention: this travelling exhibition certificate does not allow the sale of these specimen! They must remain part of your collection.

It can cover live animals or plants, or parts and derivatives of animals or plants. This document is valid for three years. It is accompanied by a continuation sheet that must be presented to customs with the original of the certificate.

If you wish to engage in such an activity, we invite you to read the circular on the formalities for travelling exhibitions.

The travelling exhibition certificate can be applied for via the Belgian CITES database.

- A sample collection certificate concerns specimens that are covered by a valid ATA carnet (amalgamation of “Admission Temporaire/Temporary Admission”). This certificate replaces a Member State’s import permits and export permits, as well as a Member State’s re-export certificates and the intra-Community certificates for the exhibition for commercial purposes. This document is valid for six months.

Attention: this sample collection certificate does not allow the sale of these specimen! They must remain part of your collection.

If you wish to engage in such an activity, we invite you to read the circular on the formalities for sample collections.

This travelling collection certificate can be applied for via the Belgian CITES database.

Tropical timber traders

S_Szefei – 123rf.com

Illustration : exotic woods Annexes AI ou BII ou C(III)

Companies that engage in commercial activities with wood species protected by CITES must comply with the provisions relating to sale and purchase..

If you engage in such an activity, the following circulars apply to you:

- the circular for tropical timber importers post-COP 16;
- the circular on the trade in timber: FLEGT and TIMBER European Union legislation.

Please note: the import of certain wood products requires a sanitary authorization issued by the Belgian Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain.

Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain (FASFC)
Control administration
Import-Export
Plants & Plant Products
CA-Botanique - Food Safety Center
55, Boulevard du Jardin Botanique
1000 Brussels
E-mail:   import.export@afsca.be
Website: www.favv-afsca.fgov.be

Pharmaceutical laboratories

Laboratories that engage in commercial activities with CITES specimens (e.g. ape blood, cells or tissues) must comply with the provisions relating to sale and purchase.

Antique dealers and salerooms

S_juliajj – 123rf.com

Illustration : ivory tusks – Annexe AI

Ivoor - ivoire - Elfenbein - ivoryIf you put up for sale, sell or engage in any other commercial activity with specimens protected by CITES such as ivory (raw, polished or carved tusks, statuettes or any other ivory object), stuffed CITES specimens (tiger, lion, bird of prey, etc.), skulls, tortoise shells, narwhal teeth, etc., the circular for antique dealers applies to your activities.

Taxidermists

If you are a taxidermist and you engage in commercial activities with CITES animal specimens, we invite you to read the circular for taxidermists.

Breeders, importers and exporters of caviar

S_Sergey_Gorrupa  – 123rf.com

Illustration : sturgeon caviar  (Acipenseridae spp, Polyodon spp)  – Annexe BII

All species of sturgeon and paddlefish (Acipenseriformes) are protected by CITES.

The provisions of CITES apply not only to live and dead animals but also to their parts and derivatives including caviar.

If you engage in commercial activities with sturgeon caviar (as a caviar packaging or re-packaging company or as a trader, wholesaler, retailer or restaurant), you have the obligation to ensure that it is of legal origin and must therefore comply with the provisions relating to sale and purchase.

Belgian companies that produce caviar, package it or re-package it have to be approved by the Belgian CITES Department.

Following approval, these companies receive a unique registration code and maintain a FASFC register in which the quantities of caviar imported, exported, re-exported, produced in situ or stored will be recorded.

For the sanitary requirements relating to the granting of approvals, we invite you to contact the Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain (FASFC):

Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain (FASFC)
Control administration
Import-Export
Végétaux & Produits végétaux
CA-Botanique - Food Safety Center
55, Boulevard du Jardin Botanique
1000 Brussels
E-mail:   import.export@afsca.be
Website: www.favv-afsca.fgov.be

For consumers, see also the leaflet on caviar.

Breeders, importers and exporters of products for human consumption

Other CITES species derivatives may be used for human consumption such as crocodile meat (all protected by CITES) or sturgeon meat, for example.

Companies that engage in commercial activities with derivatives from CITES species for human consumption must comply with the provisions relating to sale and purchase.