EU Consultation: the rules affecting hunters importing trophies

FACE has responded to a Commission consultation on the EU rules governing hunters who import trophies into the Member States.

The EU is currently looking into possibly imposing further restrictions on EU hunters importing trophies into the EU Member States through the so called ‘personal and household effects derogation’. This derogation entails a less restrictive regime for hunters compared to the more burdensome rules applied to wildlife trade in the commercial sector. See the Commission’s information document.
In summary, the FACE submission concludes that no restrictive amendments of the EU personal and household effects derogation in relation to hunting trophies should be tabled without clear evidence indicating that there are demonstrable conservation concerns warranting such restrictions. This would otherwise put an unjustified and disproportionate extra burden - which is not required by the CITES Convention - on hunters participating in a conservation activity. Such a move could have major detrimental impacts on efforts to use hunting as a conservation / livelihoods tool in range states.
Trophy hunting based on science and conducted in compliance with all relevant laws constitutes a tool for conservation that provides an economic incentive for local communities to co-exist with certain problematic species and has contributed to saving some of them from extinction.
Read more in our FACE submission about the approach we suggest the EU takes in its regulatory framework in relation to hunters participating in international conservation-based hunting trophy programmes.