The Shark Fin Trade Can Now be Regulated, Thanks to New Regulations

The fight to protect the sharks is finally paying off as a landmark decision has been made at the biggest wildlife summit in the world. 

After years of waiting, government representatives from different countries finally voted for the regulation of shark fin trade at the 186-nation Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).

In this new ruling, there will be limitations in the commercial trade of over 54 shark species including bull, blue and tiger sharks. 

Over the years, there has been a huge appetite for shark fin soup, which also escalated the number of sharks being killed for this delicacy. The new regulation also lists six species of hammerhead sharks and 37 types of guitarfish under  protection.

This has been very good news to marine conservationists and volunteers who tirelessly worked to protect these sharks against illegal shark fin trade. 

According to Ian Campbell, Associate Director of Policy and Campaigns of the PADI AWARE Foundation: “The decision to restrict the unsustainable global trade in some of the most threatened species on the planet provides us all with a hope and optimism that we are not too late to end the dramatic declines in the ocean’s most iconic, and critical, animals.”

The new rule also gives authorities more power in enforcing the limitations on the trade of species listed under protection. 

According to the IUCN Red List, more than one-third of all shark species in the world are now in danger of extinction, and if the shark fin trade will continue, it won’t be long until the  world’s shark population dwindles affecting the entire ecosystem.

The convention’s host country Panama took the lead in making sure that this goal is met. PADI with its 128,000 professionals and more than 29 million certified divers helped educate government representatives on the dangers of the shark fin trade and convinced them to vote “Yes” to finally giving the sharks the protection they need through a global petition.

This landmark decision is surely one step forward in preserving the world’s shark population.

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