Freight News, Sea

Maersk Line Fights Illegal Wildlife Trafficking

[ May 4, 2016   //   ]

Maersk Line has joined a group of 40 organizations taking steps to combat illegal wildlife trafficking by targeting key routes and ports. Signe Bruun Jensen, Global Head of Sustainability at Maersk Line, says the company strictly enforces the ban on transport of illegal wildlife.

“Maersk Line has a zero tolerance towards illegal transport of wildlife. By signing the Buckingham Declaration, we are committing to take real steps to shut down the routes exploited by traffickers of the illegal wildlife trade moving their products from killing field to marketplace,” she adds.

Maersk Line will work with the World Customs Organization and other taskforce members to develop and implement mechanisms that enable the transport sector to receive improved information about the transport of suspected illegal wildlife and related products, including methods of transportation, key routes, ports and other locations.

“This initiative which will further strengthen our ability to get valuable intelligence on for example routes and ports with higher risk of illegal activity as well as to screen data and cargo in order to identify potential shipments of suspected illegal wildlife. In turn, we will also work to increase awareness of the issue amongst employees and customers in targeted markets. These efforts are initiated in the coming weeks in South and East Africa, UAE, South East Asia and Greater China, which have been identified as illegal trade hotspots,” she explains.

After a year of negotiations and meetings in London, Geneva and Dubai, the Declaration of the United for Wildlife International Taskforce on the Transportation of Illegal Wildlife Products outlines 11 commitments to “help bring an end to the illegal trade in wildlife.”

“The transport industry has a critical role to play in stopping illegal ivory and rhino horn being trafficked at a global level and stamping out this criminality. This Declaration offers a real prospect of making the transportation of illegal wildlife products practically and economically unviable, by encouraging transport companies to take a stand and by targeting key routes and ports to disrupt this illicit trade,” reads the introduction to the Declaration signed by Prince William and The Lord Hague of Richmond.

With the Buckingham Palace Declaration, the signatories from 40 airlines, shipping firms, port operators, customs agencies, intergovernmental organizations and conservation charities agree to adopt a zero-tolerance policy against illegal wildlife trade, develop mechanisms to enable the transport sector to receive timely information and identify and promote systems to report suspicions in relation to the transportation of illegal wildlife and their products.

They will also support the development of methods by the World Customs Organization and national customs authorities in uncovering and thwarting trade in illegal wildlife and products.

Prince William

Prince William and Lord Hague of Richmond sign the Declaration.