Anguilla anguilla (European Eel)

Criteria met:  High volume (globally threatened)

Principal trade term to the EU:  bodies (kg)

Percentage of global trade to the EU:  16%

Principal source:  pre-Convention

Top EU importer:  Poland, Germany, Denmark

Top Trading Partner:  China

CITES Appendix:  II

IUCN Status:  Critically Endangered

EU imports in 2010 principally comprised bodies (641,400 kg), live specimens (103,722 kg and 19,603 individuals) and meat (83,000 kg). All of the bodies and meat and approximately half of the live specimens were pre-Convention, with 9,603 and 53,961 kg of live specimens wild-sourced. The vast majority of trade was for commercial purposes.

The wild-sourced trade primarily originated in Tunisia, with the remainder from Norway; the majority of the pre-Convention trade was imported via China from an unknown country of origin.

A. anguilla was included in the EU Annexes on 13/03/2009 in line with the Appendix-II listing of the species; 2009 was therefore the first year for which trade in this species was recorded within the CITES Trade Database. Between 2009 and 2010, imports of pre-Convention bodies decreased by 43%.

The SRG formed a positive opinion for wild specimens originating in Norway on 30/06/2009, which was subsequently removed on 18/05/2010. A negative opinion for all range States with the exception of Tunisia (within the quota published for 2010, for eels greater than or equal to 30 cm) was formed on 03/12/2010; a negative opinion for all countries was formed on 07/10/2011 and confirmed on 23/02/2012.