CITES CoP19 Parties voted in committee, 88 yes to 29 no to 17 abstain to list requiem sharks; and listed hammerhead sharks by consensus on CITES Appendix II. Final adoption in Plenary is expected in the coming days.

This Appendix II proposal would bring the majority of the shark fin trade under CITES Appendix II regulation, which helps ensure that trade is sustainable and legal.

Said Luke Warwick, Director of Wildlife Conservation Society Shark and Ray Conservation:

“This landmark vote marks the culmination of a decade of shark conservation progress within CITES. Now, finally, the deeply unsustainable shark fin trade will be fully regulated.

“The proposals adopted today for requiem and hammerhead sharks, championed by the Government of Panama, will forever change how the world’s ocean predators are managed and protected.

“These two families constitute well over half of the shark fins traded annually in a half a billion-dollar trade. Now no trade will be possible unless it is sustainable – giving these species a chance to recover, and the strength of CITES listings will drive stronger protections for sharks and rays around the world.”

WCS thanks several organizations for leading on the shark proposals in Panama, including the Government of Panama, IFAW, Blue Resources Trust, Humane Society International, Shark Conservation Fund, and the Paul G. Allen Family Foundation.

Panama led the effort, co-sponsored by more than 40 other CITES Party governments, to list all requiem sharks on CITES Appendix II, and cosponsoring another family-level listing proposal from the European Union for the small-bodied hammerhead sharks at CoP19.