Duke of Cambridge to Deliver Keynote Speech at 2018 Illegal Wildlife Trade Conference

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Duke of Cambridge

THE DUKE OF CAMBRIDGE WILL DELIVER THE KEYNOTE SPEECH AT THE 2018 ILLEGAL WILDLIFE TRADE CONFERENCE

London

Thursday 11th October, 2018

The Duke of Cambridge will deliver the keynote speech at the opening session of the 2018 Illegal Wildlife Trade Conference. The conference is being hosted by the UK Government at Battersea Evolution from 11th – 12th October 2018.

The Illegal Wildlife Trade (IWT) is an urgent global issue which is estimated to be worth up to $23 billion annually, and is the fourth most lucrative transnational crime after drugs, weapons and human trafficking. IWT not only endangers some of the most iconic wildlife species but can also have a devastating impact on countries’ security and prosperity, representing a barrier to sustainable social and economic development.

The 2018 Conference is the fourth international conference on IWT, with previous events being held in London (2014), Kasane (2015) and Hanoi (2016). Heads of State, Ministers and officials from nearly 80 countries, alongside NGOs, academics and businesses, will come together to build on previous efforts, address the underlying issues that facilitate the IWT, and make steps to tackle this criminal trade. The 2018 IWT Conference will focus on three key themes: tackling IWT as a serious organised crime, building coalitions and closing markets.

In the run up to the 2018 IWT Conference, The Duke has carried out a number of engagements which have drawn attention to the issues around IWT and how organisations can work together to fight this global crime. Last week His Royal Highness travelled to Namibia, Tanzania and Kenya as Patron of the Tusk Trust, and President of United for Wildlife. During the trip, he met with the Presidents of Tanzania and Kenya, and the Vice President of Namibia, to discuss priorities for the upcoming conference.

On the ground in Namibia, The Duke visited the Kunene region, where he saw a ground-breaking initiative to provide Namibian communities greater control and benefits from their wildlife – improving their incentives to keep protected species safe. In Tanzania, His Royal Highness visited the College of African Wildlife Management in Mweka to see how new technology is better equipping rangers to fight poachers and protect wildlife.

The Duke also saw work being done to stop the illegal exportation of poached animal products such as ivory and rhino in the port of Dar es Salaam. This was a continuation of His Royal Highness’s efforts to convene and encourage the transport sector to crack down on illegal wildlife trafficking routes. In March 2016, The Duke unveiled an ambitious, transport industry-led Declaration on the Illegal Wildlife Trade which was signed by global transport leaders at Buckingham Palace.

During the conference week The Duke of Cambridge will hold meetings with visiting world leaders. His Royal Highness has previously raised the urgent issue of IWT with global leaders including the Presidents of Vietnam, China and the United States. In 2015 The Duke delivered a speech aired on CCTV1 – the station with the largest audience in China – on the critical work needed to combat the trading of illegal wildlife goods.

In addition to delivering the conference’s keynote speech, The Duke will also attend other engagements during the Conference week. On Wednesday 10th October, His Royal Highness, accompanied by The Duke of Sussex, will join an evening reception at St. James’ Palace which is being held to officially open the 2018 IWT Conference and welcome visitors to London.

The Duke of Cambridge will also attend the first Consultative Group Meeting of the Elephant Protection Initiative which is being held at the Conference in the afternoon of Thursday 11th October. The Elephant Protection Initiative was launched at the first IWT Conference in London in October 2014 and is African Governments’ response to the elephant crisis. It now comprises 19 members states, all committed to securing the survival of African elephants and their habitats.

Wednesday 10th October, 2018

The Duke of Cambridge and The Duke of Sussex will join a reception at St James’ Palace to officially open the 2018 IWT Conference.

The Duke of Cambridge and The Duke of Sussex will join a reception to officially open the 2018 IWT Conference. The reception will welcome visiting Heads of State and Ministers, leading conservationists, business people and activists to London and is being hosted by the Secretaries of State for the FCO, Defra and DFID.

Their Royal Highnesses will meet a number of attendees at the reception, including Heads of State and Ministers, rangers and those working on the ground to tackle poaching. The Duke of Cambridge will also make a short speech.

Thursday 11th October, 2018

The Duke of Cambridge will deliver the keynote speech at the opening session of the 2018 IWT Conference

On Thursday 11th October, The Duke of Cambridge will deliver the keynote speech at the opening session of the 2018 Illegal Wildlife Trade Conference which is being held at Battersea Evolution.

The Duke of Cambridge will attend a Consultative Group Meeting of the Elephant Protection Initiative at the 2018 IWT Conference

The Duke of Cambridge will join a Consultative Group Meeting of the Elephant Protection Initiative at the Conference and deliver opening remarks at the session.

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