CITES is a multilateral environmental agreement aiming to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animal and plant species does not threaten their survival. The initiative originated in a resolution adopted in 1963 at a meeting of members of The World Conservation Union. The text of the convention was agreed at a meeting of representatives from 80 countries in Washington DC, on 3 March, 1973 (hence, its alternative title of ‘the Washington Convention’). The Convention entered into force on 1 July, 1975. As of 2006, it had 169 member parties, on all five continents.
David Brown and Erin Swails