Statement from the Department of the Interior on a Pelly Certification

Last edited 09/08/2023

Date: Friday, September 8, 2023


WASHINGTON — Under the Pelly Amendment to the Fishermen’s Protective Act of 1967, when the Secretary of the Interior finds that “nationals of a foreign country . . . are engaging in trade or taking which diminishes the effectiveness of any international program for endangered or threatened species,” such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the Secretary must certify that fact to the President.      

Today, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland notified the  Congressional Notification Letter (ESB46-012483) Pelly Amendment Pangolins PRC Senate President (2023-09-08) Signed508 [pdf]
 and  Congressional Notification Letter (ESB46-012483) Pelly Amendment Pangolins PRC House Speaker (2023-09-08) Signed508 [pdf]
 that she has issued a finding that nationals of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) are diminishing the effectiveness of CITES by engaging in trade or taking of pangolin species, pursuant to the Pelly Amendment. This finding is based on the Department’s review of the pangolin trade and the role of the PRC in continuing a demand and trade for these imperiled species.

The United States has consistently advocated for the protection of all eight CITES-listed species of pangolins, considered the world’s most heavily trafficked mammal.

In coordination with the Department of State, the Department endeavors to continue diplomatic engagement with the PRC to further pangolin protection.

Within 60 days of the Secretary’s certification, the President will notify Congress of any action taken pursuant to certification to help encourage conservation actions to prevent the extinction of pangolins.  


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