Vietnam ‘hotbed of illicit sales’
SOUTH Africa remains the main source of rhino horns for illegal trade, with most derived from poaching, but natural mortality losses, pseudohunting, thefts from government and private stockpiles, as well as illegal internal sales, also continue to contribute to illicit supply.
These are the findings of a report submitted to Cites on the status, conservation and trade of African and Asian rhinos.
“The entrenched presence of Asian-run criminal syndicates in Africa, ongoing government and private sector corruption and ineffective law enforcement strategies and practices, remain challenges that clearly frustrate progress.
“Vietnam remains the primary destination for rhino horn, but there is little evidence of concerted law enforcement. China emerges as the second most prominent destination, although authorities demonstrate a far more active commitment to prosecution.”
The report notes that demand reduction efforts continue in both countries, but so far there has been “limited assessment of its impact on rhino horn consumption”.