Trophies off the hook as EU trophy ban fails to get backing
A looming crisis for most of the northern conservancies in Namibia seems to have been averted following the rejection of the European Parliament Written Declaration that would have restricted the import of all hunting trophies to the European Union. This move would have drastically crippled conservancies financially.
At this point, the Written Declaration does not seem to have a chance to make the mark for adoption as the the European parliament only received 105 signatures of the required 376 votes which means the Declaration’s promotors failed to achieve the required votes, according to the the European Parliament’s official webpage.
“Under the ordinary legislative procedure, the European Parliament adopts its position at first reading on the basis of the proposal presented by the Commission. If the position is not approved by the Council, the European Parliament may adopt its position at a second reading by adopting amendments to the Council position.”
As a general rule, European Parliament positions take the form of consolidated texts, whereby political amendments and technical adaptations are incorporated in the Commission proposal (at first reading) or the Council position (at second reading).
Confirming the information, the director of NACSO, Maxi Louis said that as the deadline for support for this declaration was already on 18 April, “it is extremely unlikely that the text has a chance to pass,” she said.
With this current development, it means that the conservancies can breathe a sigh of relief as most of the communal conservancies relied heavily on the income generated from the sale of the trophies.
Several conservancies across the country earlier in the month had prepared written submissions which were sent to EU ambassadors and Members of the European Parliament, in response to the EU Parliament’s plans to vote to ban trophy hunting products entering the Union.
The Namibian government strongly supports conservation hunting and trophies.
If the proposed ban had been successful, it would have resulted in a radical decline of hunters visiting Namibia, with a comparable decline in income to conservancies and their members.
In 2015, conservancies earned some N$17 million from trophy hunting alone.
This revenue is used by the conservancies to pay the salaries of community wildlife guards, and to pay for the costs of managing wildlife, as well as providing household benefits to very poor rural families.