Conservationists move to take Oceanic white tip shark off the menu
The Oceanic white tip shark won initial backing Monday for more protection from the world's main mechanism regulating trade in wildlife.
It barely won the required two-thirds of the votes for inclusion in Appendix II at the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) meeting in Bangkok.
"The primary demand for the white tip is shark fin soup," said Sonja Fordham, of Shark Advocates International.
The trade has led to declines of 70 to 93 per cent in various territories, according to research cited by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.
The white tip is one of five shark species being considered for inclusion in Appendix II, which requires trade to be certified as sustainable.
But the white tip’s inclusion was only approved by "a very close vote with only 68 per cent," said Ralf Sonntag, Germany country director for the International Fund for Animal Welfare.
Close votes can be re-submitted to the plenary session, which is due Wednesday and Thursday.
CITES also allows member countries an 18-month grace period to implement its trade edicts.
China and Japan were among the countries opposed to more protection for the white tip.