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Cotes Regs update and notification of enactment date (October 1 2018).

June 12, 2018

-------- Original message --------

From: "Blake, Kristopher (DEFRA)" <Kristopher.Blake@defra.gsi.gov.uk> 

Date: 12/06/2018 12:09 (GMT+00:00) 

To: "Blake, Kristopher (DEFRA)" <Kristopher.Blake@defra.gsi.gov.uk> 

Subject: COTES Regulations 2018 


Dear all – 


The Control of Trade in Endangered Species Regulations 2018 have now been laid before Parliament and are available for viewing on the Legislation.gov website (link below). The Regulations are now subject to the Parliamentary scrutiny before they can come into force on 01 October 2018.




As previously discussed at CSUG, COTES 2018 is primarily a consolidation exercise of the several existing COTES regulations. Some new provisions are, however, highlighted below:


·      Allow enforcement bodies a new power to make “test purchases” of specimens where trade in such specimens would normally be an offence

·      Inclusion of a provision that a “suitably qualified person” would be able to take non-invasive samples from live animals or other samples, e.g. from dead specimens, parts and derivatives or plants, rather than requiring a vet to do this as was previously the case.

·      Enable police to recover expenses linked to seizure of a live specimen in the course of investigating an offence. The court that convicts a person of the offence has power to order the person to reimburse the expenses.

·      Allow for ban or suspension from possessing or controlling CITES specimens to be imposed on persons who transgress the Regulations. 

·      Include a power to designate ports of entry and exit through which CITES controlled species and products can be brought in and out of the UK.

·      New offences, to be prosecuted via civil sanctions (existing offences will continue to attract criminal sanctions)

·      Advertising specimens for sale- Annex A specimens without inclusion of an EC/Article 10 certificate number [Regulation 6].

·      Failing to properly package and label caviar [described in Articles 64(2), 66(6) and 66(7) of Commission Regulation 864/2006]


Guidance on the civil sanctions regime will be produced prior to the coming into force of the regulations, but please do get in touch if you have any questions.


Kind regards,






Kristopher Blake | Policy Advisor | International Species Conservation | Wildlife, International, Climate and Forestry Policy | Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs | 2ndFloor, Horizon House, 1 Deanery Road, Bristol, BS1 5AH | Direct line: 0208 02 63500



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