Sponsored delegates project

Photo by IISD/ENB | Kiara Worth
(photo by IISD/ENB | Kiara Worth)

The Sponsored Delegates Project aims to ensure representation at meetings of the Conference of the Parties (CoP) of least developed countries, developing countries and countries with economies in transition that do not have sufficient funds to support the participation of two delegates. Full participation in CoPs is essential to ensure that the recommendations and decisions that are voted reflect the agreements reached by the majority of CITES Parties. This is very important given that, in the past, the results of several crucial votes taken at the meetings were decided by very close margins.

Provisions of the Convention

Resolutions / Decisions

Funding Status for CoP18

Call for support - CoP18 

The Secretariat invites all States and organizations that might be able to provide financial support to inform us as soon as possible. The fund-raising target for this project is USD 1 million to enable the Secretariat to provide the same level of support to Parties as at previous meetings.

If you are interested in making a financial contribution to this project, please contact the CITES Secretariat ([email protected])


Contributions received for the CoP18 Sponsored Delegates Project (as at 16 February 2018)

Donors Amount in USD
European Union (deposit)  60,000


Selection criteria

(Criteria used for CoP17 - SC66 Doc.12.7)

  • Representatives from developed countries will not receive support and amongst those which request financial assistance, priority will be given to those Parties with the lowest percentage in the scale of contributions found in Annex 4 of Resolution Conf. 16.2 on Financing and the costed programme of work for the Secretariat for the triennium 2014-2016.

(Criteria used for CoP16 - SC62 Doc.10.2.6)

  • First priority in the use of the funds raised will be given to sponsoring up to two delegates from each of the least developed countries. The next priority will be to support delegates from developing countries. Priority will be given to those Parties that attended with fewer than 6 delegates at CoP15. 
  • For previous meetings, the selection was based on the four categories of the UNDP Human Development Index, (with priority order starting at the bottom of the lowest development list). However, for CoP16, the Secretariat recommend the use of the same indicator as the one that will be selected in relation to document SC62 Doc. 11 (on Provision of support for committee members) in order to harmonize the approaches to these two support mechanisms.

    Information on other sources of funding for CoP18

    Resolution Conf. 17.3 on Sponsored Delegates Project URGES governments, international organisations, non-governmental organisations and private bodies which, instead of using the possibility to provide funds to the Sponsored Delegates Project, decide to fund the participation in CoP meetings of representatives from other Parties (for example by covering travel or accommodation costs), to inform the Secretariat about such funding.

    Any information received will appear here. 

    If any entities wish to provide such information, please contact [email protected]

      Previous SDP information