Indonesian coral trade

RG Lilley rglilley at
Mon Jan 25 10:37:35 EST 1999

> From: RG Lilley <rglilley at>
> To: coral-list at
> Subject: Indonesian coral trade
> Date: Jumat, 22 Januari, 1999 17:30
> The Indonesian Scientific Authority for CITES just recommended a
> quota of over one million pieces of corals for this year (1999). It is
> slightly more that last year's quota. I am sure that will make the
> happy, bearing in mind that for every one million pieces exported,
> as much as ten times that amount is extracted from the reefs (we are
> talking about live corals for the aquarium trade) and dies before it is
> exported, because of bad handling. 
> Catalaphyllia jardinei, the species which I heard is banned from entering
> the UK this  year, has been given an export quota of 75,000 pieces for
> year, by the Indonesian authorities.  The guidelines for the coral trade
> were prepared last year, with the hope that this document will somehow
> down the rate of corals coming out from Indonesia. But it seems that the
> guidelines have not been implemented by the authorities. The guidelines
> were prepared using a participatory approach, and were agreed to be
> implemented by the major stakeholders. The traders were the ones who were

> very enthusiastic and willing to give the guidelines a try. But, I guess,
> business is business. 
> There are strong arguments among the decision makers that Indonesia needs
> more and more cash, especially during this economic crisis. Yes,
> eco-labelling as a market force is a good idea, but who will enforce the
> principles within this country?. Oh well, I am too pessimistic. But, I am
> here, trying to convince and motivate people to care and take
> responsibility for their environment. And it seems that I am bashing my
> head against a brick wall. There are intentions to try coral farming, but
> will they be economically viable? If the authorities are still willing to
> allow the export of corals collected from the wild, why should anybody
> to invest  in coral farming? Clearly there are no incentives (rather like
> tree planting). However, even a total trade ban would not address the
> problem here – destruction of the reefs by coral miners, bombers,
> and so on.
> Gayatri Lilley
> Jl. Pinang II Kav 11
> Jakarta 12450, Indonesia
> e-mail : rglilley at

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