On 29 November 2013, an amendment to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) will enter into force to allow regional economic integration organizations to accede to the Convention. This amendment, known as the ‘Gaborone Amendment’, was adopted in Gaborone, Botswana, 30 years ago, on 30 April 1983.

The Gaborone amendment defines regional economic integration organizations (REIO) as ‘organizations constituted by sovereign States which have competence in respect of the negotiation, conclusion and implementation of international agreements in matters transferred to them by their Member States and covered by this Convention. Currently, the only REIO with competence with respect to the matters regulated by CITES is the European Union.