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Application launched to help prevent illegal wildlife trade

30 ,Mar 2022

AMMAN — CITESJO, a smartphone application which regulates tracking and unsustainable trade of wildlife, was launched on Thursday, in the presence of HRH Princess Basma and HRH Princess Alia.

The application is part of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), and resulted from a cooperation between the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN) and the Jordanian Hashemite Fund for Human Development (JOHUD).

During the launch event in Amman, Princess Basma underscored the importance of the application to support national efforts to preserve wildlife.

She added that preserving the environment is among the priorities of JOHUD’s awareness efforts directed towards women and youth in particular.

Princess Basma lauded the efforts of the RSCN, the Ministry of Agriculture, Jordan Customs Department (JCD), in addition to expressing appreciation for the US embassy for its continued support and help in activating the application.

Understanding the importance of the convention, the RSCN together with its partners work with high levels of cooperation and collaboration, RSCN President Khaled Irani said during the launch event, in addition to talking about the society’s long-standing experience in nature conservation.

Natural Resources Programme Director at JOHUD Motasem Hiyari said that the application, which was developed and designed by JOHUD, is a step towards environmental innovation, in addition to being an effective tool in resolving challenges experienced by the RSCN, the Ministry of Agriculture and the Jordan Customs Department (JCD), in regulating the export and import of endangered species.

“The application provides ecological services and serves sectors of specific national significance including agriculture, customs and environmental sectors,” according to Hiyari, who said that the application acts as an effective communication tool among the concerned bodies.

Hiyari pointed out that the RSCN, which organised various training sessions for its personnel, JCD and Agriculture Ministry staff, will be managing the application.

Henry Constantine, the official in charge of the regional office for environment in the Middle East and North Africa at the US embassy in Amman, said in his remarks that the application is one of the positive results of the cooperation between Jordan and the US as part of the free trade agreement.

“Wildlife trafficking is a multi-billion dollar transnational criminal activity that is both a critical conservation issue and an acute security threat,” Constantine noted, adding that the application will support border control and enforcement bodies, to better perform and communicate, and will help preserve the Kingdom’s natural resources.

Secretary General of the Ministry of Environment Mohammad Khashashneh said that the application will help get a better handle on illegal trade of wild species of flora and fauna.

“Jordan has signed most international agreements relating to environmental protection which reflects the Kingdom’s growing interest in environment preservation,” Khashashneh further expressed.

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