DP World recently hosted the United for Wildlife Taskforce collaboration between seven international conservation organisations, established by The Duke of Cambridge, for lunch and a tour of the company’s flagship Jebel Ali Port.
DP World is a member of the Taskforce, which is committed to focusing increased attention and action on the most pressing conservation issues of our time, including the multi-million dollar illegal wildlife trade from Africa to Asia in elephant ivory, rhino horn, big cats and many other species.
The meeting follows continuous work by Dubai Customs, in collaboration with DP World, to tackle the trade in line with UAE legislation. Between 2012 to 2014, Dubai Customs seized, destroyed and repatriated over 775 pieces of ivory, worth over US$10 million, and 618 tonnes of sandalwood. Overall seizures increased by 36% during this period.
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman of DP World, said: “Stemming the flow of illegal trade in endangered species is a major issue and as a global ports operator we have an important role to play, in partnership with customs authorities, in eradicating this morally reprehensible activity. As a member of the taskforce we enjoyed meeting other participants to help develop recommendations for governments, global organisations and private-sector supporters.
The most recent wildlife issue relates to the killing of Cecil the Lion in Zimbabwe, Africa, that was killed by a US citizen, who paid US$50,000 to kill the lion. The killer reportedly skinned the animal and left it headless near Hwange National Park.
Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem continued: “One of the aims is to promote greater awareness within our industry and to encourage greater cooperation between official bodies, organisations and the transport sector to combat this illegal trade. The transport industry–specifically airlines, shipping lines and port operators can contribute in breaking the chain between suppliers and consumers of illegal wildlife products.”
World-renowned wildlife presenter Sir David Attenborough recently urged people to support the conservation charities that are protecting rhinos and elephants from becoming extinct, as a result of illegal trading activities.
Watch a video of Sir David Attenborough on the importance of wildlife conservation:
(Source: Curtis Packaging / YouTube)
The visit included a briefing by DP World management and Dubai Customs on how Dubai authorities work together to eradicate illegal wildlife trade through the emirate, in line with UAE legislation on endangered species introduced in 1974.
Task Force members in Dubai led by the Rt Hon William Hague include DP World; World Customs Organisation (WCO); International Maritime Organisation (IMO); the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) and Maersk Line.