Cathay Pacific today joined over 30 other global passenger airlines in banning the carriage of all shark fin cargo. We are delighted and applaud Cathay for taking this positive step. By imposing a 100% total ban with immediate effect, Hong Kong SAR’s flag carrier has shown it is serious about protecting sharks and our global marine ecosystem.

Cathay’s commendable action has created a more level playing field within the airline sector, and has removed much doubt and confusion. As more airlines and hotels ban shark fin — perceived by many Hong Kong SAR  people to be a cruel, unsustainable and unethical product procured from illegal sources — the pressure on the Hong Kong SAR government to legislate for a total ban on commercial sales of shark fin can only increase. That’s why today’s announcement by Cathay Pacific, Hong Kong SAR’s de facto airline, is so important.

“A responsible airline like Cathay Pacific should never be seen to be a link in the supply chain for a criminal trade,” WildAid Hong Kong SAR’s Alex Hofford said. “That’s why we are so happy that Cathay has done the right thing by no longer carry any shark fin or shark products. Shipping sharks by air is not just an issue of sustainability, but ethics and legality.”

WildAid is now calling on Fiji Airways to ditch their outdated and broken “sustainable shark fins only” policy. As the last man standing, Fiji Airways is the last and only airline to still operate such a misguided policy. WildAid is also urging other airlines such as Hong Kong Airlines and Malindo Air to take a stance on shipping shark fin cargo, and to make their policies clear.

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About WildAid

WildAid is a non-profit organization with a mission to protect wildlife from illegal trade and other imminent threats. While most wildlife conservation groups focus on protecting animals from poaching, WildAid primarily works to reduce global consumption of wildlife products such as elephant ivory, rhino horn and shark fin soup. With an unrivaled portfolio of celebrity ambassadors and a global network of media partners, WildAid leverages more than $308 million in annual pro-bono media support with a simple message: When the Buying Stops, the Killing Can Too. 

Journalists on deadline may email communications@wildaid.org