There is a huge glaring loophole in CITES. A loophole so big that the very intention of CITES can be undermined with no more that the use of of one letter.
The intention of CITES has always been to ensure that the trade in endangered species is tightly regulated, including a requirement that critically endangered species cannot be traded for commercial purposes. Despite this clear intention, commercial trade in critically endangered animas continue by simply eternising purées code Z (which applies to zoos), rather than purpose code T (which applies to commercial transactions).
In practise it does seem to matter if the zoo in question is unable to provide any conservation benefits or even meet minimal welfare requirements, nor does it matter if the trade to this so-called zoo has huge commercial value. Countless examples have shown that by simply proclaiming the transaction to be zoo purposes, a commercial enterprise and transaction is able to escape from CITES most fundamental safeguard.
Image Credit: https://cites.org/
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