Round Table Discussion

Following the Framework for Action established for the WTMS, the pandemic situation limited us to move forward where actually the relation to wildlife trade with regard to the virus transmission from wildlife was hot in the air. Engaging with traders in traditional markets is a key objective in the strategy.

However, it was very difficult to arrange due to restrictions on market operational time and we need to form this approach with extra care as trade in protected species is a crime. Considering its infamous nature we chose to begin in Tomohon.

The team assessed the strategy in the situation and found the most accessible was to begin to approach the government first, to find out about what they actually think of illegal sale of bushmeat in traditional markets.

We found interesting information such as Tomohon government has never officially promoted the market as an “extreme market“. This led to the followup action removing the “extreme” sign a few days after the discussion. The aim was to transform the image of Tomohon market from “extreme” to traditional where it is originally promoted. This step will support our approach to the traders to be cooperative and proud to not sell endangered wildlife.

Maximising follow up of the WTMS while balancing current restrictions, survey of three top traditional market were made in December to study the impacts of the pandemic on bushmeat activities and attitudes of traders and buyers.

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