CITES COP examines agarwood after release of ITTO–CITES report

21 November 2022

Adult tree of Aquilaria malaccensis, Penang, Malaysia. Photo: Lau Kah Hoo

Panama City, Panama 21 November 2022: The 19th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), convening on 14–25 November in Panama, is considering a decision related to agarwood-producing species, based on a report released at COP19 by ITTO and CITES.

Agarwood (mainly produced from species in the genera Aquilaria and Gyrinops) is highly valued for its fragrance, and it is used to produce incense, perfumes and various other products. Prices of up to USD 100,000 per kg have been recorded for top-quality agarwood, leading to unsustainable levels of extraction and the listing of all species of Aquilaria and Gyrinops in CITES Appendix II since 2004.

COP19 will likely adopt a decision proposing revisions to guidance for implementing the agarwood listing, including to an agarwood glossary and on guidance for making non-detriment findings. The deliberations have been informed by a joint ITTO and CITES report, Exploited, Endangered and Expensive, which was produced as part of the CITES Tree Species Program. The report benefited from a validation workshop organized by ITTO in June 2022 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, which brought together more than 50 agarwood experts.

The report is part of the ITTO Technical Series. More information on CITES deliberations on agarwood and other tropical tree species is available at

Download the report here.

Related SDGs

The report examines best management practices of agarwood-producing species and reviews wild and planted agarwood resources as well as processing technologies, products and regulatory practices with the aim of strengthening the capacities of national authorities to control trade in agarwood species.

Cultivation and inoculation or agarwood species will relieve pressure on wild populations in natural forests.

ITTO and CITES have a long-standing partnership to assist countries in implementing the growing number of timber species listings in the CITES Appendices.