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ILLEGAL WILDLIFE TRADE

ILLEGAL WILDLIFE TRADE PROGRAMME

WHY ILLEGAL WILDLIFE TRADE?

The Illegal Wildlife Trade is is a multi-million dollar business run by dangerous criminal syndicates that deal in the harvesting and trading of wild species and their body parts. With high demand from a growing Asian middle class stoking the fire, this trade is the biggest threat facing wildlife today.

Myanmar is a global hub for illegal wildlife trade. Because of our remaining wilderness and abundant wildlife our forests are a prime source for some of the most poached species such as tigers, Asian elephants and pangolins. To make matters worse, Myanmar is situated next to the notorious lawless Golden Triangle region, the global illegal wildlife hypermarket.

WHAT ARE WE DOING?

We are working with government and partners to end the open sale of illegal wildlife products within the next two years, and then to close the Golden Triangle markets. In Yangon, markets have already agreed to end sales of ivory and other wildlife products and across the country we are training law enforcement to identify, seize and deal with wildlife products. At a policy level we have helped to close the loopholes in existing laws, making Myanmar’s one of the strongest illegal wildlife trade laws in the region, and have been asked to draft a national Illegal Wildlife Trade action plan.

Tackling the illegal wildlife trade in Myanmar is a huge challenge, but this challenge also presents significant opportunity for conservation gains - allowing us to tackle the problem right at its very source.

MEET THE TEAM

Alex Saxby
Alex Saxby
Illegal Wildlife Trade Programme Manager

What do you do?

"I lead the enthusiastic and multi-skilled Illegal Wildlife Team in Myanmar. We support and work alongside law enforcement, authorities and other partners on projects across the country to combat the trafficking of wildlife. Our approaches are holistic, strategic and practical with an emphasis on transboundary collaboration at key nexus points in the Golden Triangle, the Dawn Tenesserim Landscape and the borders to the West. Capacity building and public awareness campaigns work in tandem with proactive trafficking route assessments, investigations and bespoke engagement with local communities and indigenous groups in crucial landscapes."

Why do you do it?

"Myanmar is a special jewel and it's an honour to work alongside local nationals to try and protect their future and that of the environment around us. My law enforcement background combating transnational organised crime has a perfect synergy with the aims of the team and our important mutual challenge."

Photo withheld for security reasons.

Su Su Yamin
Su Su Yamin
Illegal Wildlife Trade Project Officer

What do you do?

"I am working on monitoring illegal wildlife markets and wildlife trade routes in Myanmar, and giving technical and educational support to participating agencies under Myanmar's National Wildlife Law Enforcement Task Force.”

Why do you do it?

"Humans have long been nature's biggest enemy but I believe it is our moral duty to protect and conserve the environment and its wildlife. I get great satisfaction in being in a role where I can make a difference to Myanmar’s biodiversity and our community. It is the most meaningful work I have ever done." </br></br> Photo withheld for security reasons.

Sofia Venturini
Sofia Venturini
Conservation Programme Officer

What do you do?

Why do you do it?



Photo withheld for security reasons.

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