New Migratory Species Champions to be Named on Eve of CMS COP13



Gandhinagar, India, 16 February 2020 - Seven new Migratory Species Champions will be named at a special high-level event today just before the opening of the Thirteenth Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS COP13). The award ceremony will take place during a pre-COP event at the Gift Club and will be followed by a reception hosted by the Indian Government. 
The Migratory Species Champion Programme aims to promote initiatives developed under the CMS Family and encourage their sustainable support. India will join the ranks of CMS Champions at the event for the first time.  
The other Champions to be awarded on Sunday are the Governments of Germany, Italy, Monaco, Norway, the European Commission, and the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD). Together these governments have committed over 6 million USD and in-kind support to the work of CMS since the last CMS COP was held in 2017, supporting a range of specific initiatives including wildlife conservation in Africa to implementing measures to preserve marine life.
Amy Fraenkel, Executive Secretary of CMS said: “We are incredibly grateful for the generosity of these governments, who have gone above and beyond in their support to the work of CMS.  Without this kind of support, we could not be as effective in our efforts to ensure the conservation of migratory species and their habitats.” 
During the event, these Champions will showcase how their actions have contributed to advancing wildlife conservation. 
The full list of Champions to be recognized are:
The Indian Government, which is hosting CMS COP13, will be recognized with Champion Plus status for its commitments towards the Small Grant Programme 2020-2023 and for supporting the Energy Task Force in promoting wildlife-friendly energy over the same period. 
The German Government will be recognized with Champion Plus status for its support to furthering migratory species conservation in Africa for the period 2020-2022. Africa hosts eight regions that have been defined as ‘biodiversity hotspots’, which are critical habitats for many migratory species including landbirds, Gorillas, marine turtles, sharks and aquatic mammals. To this end, the German Government has committed to fund a Junior Professional Officer within the CMS Secretariat to support the implementation of the Gorilla Agreement, the CMS-CITES African Carnivores Initiative and the African Eurasian Landbirds Action Plan.
The Italian Government will be recognized with Champion Plus status for its support to the development of the global animal migration atlas for the period 2018-2020. This atlas is crucial for the conservation of migratory species as understanding their migrations would help identify certain drivers of population declines and mitigate them through conservation actions.
The Government of the Principality of Monaco will be recognized with Champion Plus status for its commitment towards shark conservation for the period 2019-2021 and for marine species conservation for the period 2020-2022. Monaco’s financial and political support has enabled CMS to advance its marine agenda since 2015.
The Norwegian Government will be recognized with Champion Plus status for its support to sustainable development and migratory species conservation for the period 2020-2022. This grant will support CMS work to promote global efforts to reach the 2030 Agenda that are beneficial for people and wildlife alike.
Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi will be recognized with Champion Plus status for its renewed commitment towards the conservation of birds of prey in Africa and Eurasia for 2020-2023 and for the conservation of Dugongs and their habitats over the same period. Environment Agency - Abu Dhabi hosts CMS’s only office outside of CMS headquarters in Bonn. The leadership of the UAE to co-develop and support implementation of the two MOUs has been fundamental for the protection of Dugongs, birds of prey and other migratory species over the last ten years.
The European Commission will be awarded Champion Plus status for its support to strengthening national legislation for migratory species for the Period 2020-2023. This generous grant will enable CMS to further set, strengthen and enforce national legal frameworks for wildlife.

For more information and interviews please contact:

Florian Keil, Coordinator of the Joint Communications Team at the UNEP/CMS and UNEP/AEWA Secretariats, Mobile: +91 6359985289, [email protected]
Veronika Lenarz, Public Information, CMS Secretariat, Mobile: +91 6359985291, [email protected]

Notes for Editors:

Social Media: @bonnconvention #cmscop13

Last updated on 20 April 2020