In keeping with its mandate to conserve, manage and sustainably use wildlife, the GWCMC has licensing processes to aid in the fulfillment of its national obligations. The licensing processes operate in conjunction with permits and certificates and cover not only domestic and international trade but also non-commercial usage such as research.

The International Trade

To obtain a licence to engage in the international trade in wildlife from Guyana, a Commercial Export Licence or Commercial Import Licence must be obtained. The following steps must be undertaken to acquire the licences:

  1. Submission of completed application forms for Commercial Export/Import Licence AND Holding Premises Licence before the close of the published deadline.
  2. Supporting documents must also be submitted at the same time.
    • National Identification Card, Driver Licence, Passport or any other form of national identification
    • If a registered business, a sealed certified copy of the Business Registration
    • In the case of a company, sealed and certified copies of the following documents
      1. Certificate of Incorporation
      2. Articles of Association
      3. Notice of Directors
    • Copy of Transport or Rental or Lease Agreement for Holding Premises
  3. Attendance of an interview. This step is applicable to all new applicants and may also apply to some re-applicants.

Interviewees are expected to demonstrate a strong ability to successfully engage in the international wildlife trade in addition to having a good understanding of the legal framework within which they are required to operate. Interviewees must also possess a sound knowledge of the care and handling of the species which they wish to trade. It should be noted that Guyana is a signatory to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and, as such, the international trade in wildlife is conducted in accordance with our obligations to that Convention.

Currently, there is a cap on the number of persons that the Commission will licence to engage in international wildlife.

The Holding Premises Licence

A holder of a Commercial Export Licence is also required to obtain a Holding Premises Licence. Approval of this licence is subject to the premises being inspected by veterinary personnel and deemed satisfactory for the holding of wildlife for the purpose of trade.

While the Commercial Export Licence authorises the holder to export wildlife, a permit or certificate is needed to cover every transaction. The table below, extracted from the Fourth Schedule of the Wildlife Conservation and Management Act, 2016, lists the types of documents needed to engage in international wildlife trade and the associated fees.

Import Permit $5,000
Export permit $5,000
Wildlife Ranch Product Permit $10,000
Re-export Certificate $10,000
Certificate of Introduction from the Sea $5,000
Captive Bred Certificate $10,000
Artificial Propagation Certificate $10,000
Pre-Act Certificate $10,000
Licences (Annual Fee)
Holding Premises Licence $100,000
Commercial Export Licence $100,000
Commercial Import Licence $100,000
Captive Breeding Operation Licence $50,000
Artificial Propagation Operation Licence $50,000
Wildlife Ranching Operation Licence $50,000
Holding Premises Application Fee $25,000


The Domestic Trade

The passage of the Wildlife Conservation, Management and Sustainable Use Regulations in February 2019 has ushered in a licensing system for domestic wildlife use covering a suite of six licences. Together, these licences would cover every category of domestic wildlife use.  The licences are as follows:

  • Wildlife Trapping Licence
  • Commercial Licence
  • Wildlife Collecting Licence
  • Wildlife Recreational Licence
  • Captive Wildlife Licence
  • Special Wildlife Licence

Examples of the types of persons who are engaged in wildlife use locally and who would need to acquire licences include trappers, middlemen, wild meat vendors, wildlife breeders, wildlife collectors, researchers and recreational hunters.

To obtain a licence for any category of wildlife use, applicants will be required to:

  1. Submit an application form
  2. National Identification Card or Passport (original and copy, back and front)
  3. Two (2) recent Passport size photos
  4. TIN Certificate (Original and Copy)
  5. Firearm Licence (Original and Copy) for Recreational Hunters only
  6. Show proof of having adequate housing for trapped wildlife (for trappers and middlemen)
  7. Food Handling Certificate (Restaurants, cook-shops, rum-shops/bars)
  8. Pay an Application Processing Fee

Applications are vetted by the Commission and once approved, the applicant is required to pay the corresponding fee.

N.B. Indigenous Village Councils may also have to apply for a licence to cover wildlife users who are registered members of the village.