The United Nations University (UNU) has signed a licencing agreement with the Asian Institute of Technology (AIT), by which AIT will implement the UNU-developed Wildlife Enforcement Monitoring System (WEMS) in Asia.
Illicit wildlife trade accounts for billions of dollars in criminal transactions each year, while destabilising ecosystems and pushing some of the world’s most sensitive animal and plant species closer to extinction.
WEMS assists in the monitoring of illegal wildlife trafficking and crime by providing national enforcement institutions with a common data collection, analysis, and reporting mechanism. It can aid in enforcement of national legislations on wild animal and plant protection as well as compliance with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and other relevant international conventions.
The WEMS-Asia Secretariat is to be established at AIT under the aegis of AIT Solutions. It will build on the model already operational in Africa, where WEMS has been successfully implemented in several countries through the intergovernmental Lusaka Agreement Task Force.
WEMS-Asia will empower governments in Asia to monitor the poaching and trafficking of wildlife and forest products while facilitating cross-border collaborations, building capacity, and catalysing knowledge transfer.
For more on the signing of the licencing agreement, see the press release on the AIT website.
For more about WEMS, see the UNU report Bytes Beyond Borders.