The MEM Seminar Series 2004/2005


Bird-nest soup, elephants and ivory, whales, dolphins, cockatoos, tropical timber, and shark-fin soup – all these  are affected by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). CITES  is an international agreement to ensure that trade in wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival.


This paper will discuss the following questions: What is CITES?  Where has CITES gone astray; and what are its consequence for poor countries?  The Seminar will give examples of cases where CITES have not been followed as seen in the discussion at the recent CITES meeting in Bangkok in October 2004.


The speaker believes that CITES is driven by western countries, but that developing countries are also culpable. Ordinary people suffers when CITES is misused for a radical purpose, for example, as a fund-raising tool by Western environmental NGO’s, animal rights groups, or to support fundamental beliefs to ban the harvest of non-endangered wildlife. ASEAN should assume an important moderating role in CITES.


About the speaker

Dr Giam Choo Hoo is a CITES Animals Committee member. He was elected in 1994, and has since been re-elected to become its longest serving member.


Dr Giam was the leader of the Singapore CITES delegations 1986-1995. He drafted the Singapore CITES law and was responsible for its implementation.


He has been closely associated with ASEAN on all CITES issues, and was an Advisor to the Royal Cambodian delegation at the CITES meeting, Bangkok 2-14 Oct 2004.


Dr Giam was the Chief Veterinary Officer of Singapore. He is a Past-President of the Association of Veterinary Surgeons Malaysia/ Singapore, the Singapore Veterinary Association, and a CVA Regional Representative (Commonwealth Veterinary Association). He is a member of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons, England.


A consultant in international wildlife issues, Dr Giam is a member of the  IUCN-Crocodile Specialist Group  Steering Committee



Seminar on



“Bird-nest Soup and the Politics of CITES”





Dr Giam Choo Hoo

Wildlife Consultant.

CITES Animals Committee Representative for SEAsia.



Friday 18th Feb 2005

6.00pm – 8.00pm

Executive Room 5

SDE 3 Level 2


All Are Welcome


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For more information,

please call Ms Wong Mei Yin @ 6874 1663

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