Historic day in Costa Rica
- By Richard Branson -
- Oct 11, 2012
An historic day in Costa Rica. We went into the rainforest with President Chinchilla and Minister Castro to sign the Executive Decree banning the importation, exportation or transportation of fins from shark finning. The President stood up against vested interests that even this morning were trying to stop the Decree. She, and everybody here, was determined to do the right thing.
It was very interesting to meet the children of the ministers who have been lobbying for a long time to get this ban in place. We are just fortunate that sometimes a letter sent at the right time - in a pincer movement with lobbying from inside the country - can make all the difference. Now they’ve got the government wholeheartedly behind it.
Because Costa Rica have said yes today the other Central American countries have all agreed to follow suit, Honduras, Nicaragua, Guatemala and El Salvador. It needed all of them to agree to go along with it so that nobody could challenge the WMO or any other trade organisation.
Also spoke with the Minister about supporting manta rays being protected under CITES. There is a UN CITES meeting in March, at which he will support the protection of the manta rays as well. Alongside the OceanElders, WildAid and Virgin Unite., let’s keep this great momentum going.
Here is the letter we wrote to President Chinchilla.
By Richard Branson. Founder of Virgin Group