India seeks removal of restrictions on trade of sheesham wood products

Economy


NEW DELHI: India has sought a removal of restrictions on trade of products made of sheesham wood under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) citing its abundant availability in the country.

The Dalbergia genus species, around 200 in total including sheesham and rosewood, was enlisted in the Appendix-II of the CITES in 2016. Items falling under Appendix-II are subject to trade restrictions to check over-utilisation.

“The Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change has submitted a proposal to CITES for delisting of Dalbergia sissoo from Appendix-II of CITES, which restricts trade of items made of sheesham wood,” the Export Promotion Council for Handicrafts (EPCH) said in a statement.

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Exports of wooden handicrafts rose 27.13% to Rs 5,424.91 crore in 2018-19. However, in the April-July period of FY20, exports of wooden handicrafts grew 1.27% to Rs 1,680.69 crore.

“Based on non-detrimental finding (NDF) study carried out by Botanical Survey of India, Dalbergia sissoo does not fall into any threatened category and is available in abundance both in wild and cultivated populations and on the basis of these findings of NDF study, a proposal has been submitted by the ministry to CITES for delisting of Dalbergia sissoo from Appendix II of CITES,” the council said.

The 18th meeting of CoP of CITES is under way in Geneva from August 17-28.

EPCH further said the proposal moved to delist one of the species of Dalbergia genus — Dalbergia sissoo (sheesham) — is in the interest of the artisans and farmers of the sub-continent along with Nepal, Bhutan and Bangladesh.



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