Rescued tiger

EU tiger trade

The ruthless business of tiger traders in Europe

The Legal trade

Research by FOUR PAWS revealed that tiger traders operating in Europe can easily sell captive bred tigers to Asian countries where the demand for tiger parts for traditional medicine is widespread. Further enquiries also reveal how the legal trade facilitates illegal trade with tiger ending up in hands of convicted wildlife traffickers.

Between 1999 and 2016, 1412 live tigers were legally exported from Europe. Out of which, 161 were sent to various Asian countries (China, Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam) where there’s a high demand for traditional medicine made with tiger parts.

Top 5 of EU member states exporting live tigers:

01 Italy 294
02 France 214
03 Germany 194
04 Czech Republic 84
05 Spain 79


Exports of live tigers to Asia

01 China 67
02 Vietnam 31
03 Cambodia 24
04 Thailand 19
05 Malaysia 3


Tigertrade public opinion

The illegal trade

The killing of tigers for traditional medicine and the trade of tiger products is not only an issue in Asia but also here in Europe. Between 1999 and 2017, 8,278 illegal tiger products, such as tiger bouillon cubes, teeth and claws, and 57 illegal live tigers were confiscated in the EU. All seizures are assumed to represent 10 % of what is smuggled so these official numbers only show the tip of the iceberg.

Top 5 EU member states regarding number of seized LIVE TIGERS:

01 France 8 seizures 18 tigers
02 Italy 6 seizures 13 tigers
03 Belgium 4 seizures 11 tigers
04 Slovakia 2 seizures 8 tigers
05 Spain 7 seizures 7 tigers


Top 5 EU member states regarding number of seized TIGER PRODUCTS:

01Denmark16 seizures2 688 products
02The Netherlands51 seizures1 784 products
03UK93 seizures952 products
04Germany36 seizures892 products
05Czech Republic4 seizures804 products
Tigertrade public opinion


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