I have no doubt the Thai government will do nothing about wildlife conservation, even though Thailand’s Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has just told the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) currently meeting in Bangkok that Thailand will do everything it can to stop the Thai ivory trade. After all, in Thailand it’s all about money.
So, it’s not surprising just two days later to hear a branch of the Thai government, the Thai Department of Fisheries, say they are against a proposal by the United States and several South American nations to put sharks and manta rays on a CITES protection list in an attempt to control international trade of these species.
According to the Thai Department of Fisheries, the proposal on shark and manta ray protection could hurt local fisherman and the Thai ornamental fishing industry.
Of course, anyone with a brain knows the Thai Department of Fisheries refusal to even consider putting sharks and manta ray on a protection list has everything to do with the lucrative shark fin soup industry in Thailand as well as the thousands of manta ray that are injured or killed by Thai fisherman every year with the use of illegal nets, and nothing to do with the actual legal fishing industry in Thailand.
According to the Thai Department of Fisheries, Thai fisherman must also be the stupidest people on the planet. After all, when told several species of shark would be put on a protected list, a representative from the Thai Department of Fisheries said they were against the proposal as:
“Listing the sharks on the protection list could land our fishermen in trouble as they might unintentionally catch the fish and be punished”.
Apparently, Thai fisherman must be incredibly stupid as they can’t tell the difference between a shark and a catfish.
Like I have said since I came to Thailand, the country will eventually be barren of any wildlife worth mentioning, both in Thai jungles and in ocean water. After all, the Thai government proves again and again with its ‘all talk and no action’ it has no intention of every implementing programs that will benefit wildlife protection in Thailand.
Personally, I was against CITES even holding their latest conference in Thailand. After all, an international conservation conference like this legitimizes a country and Thailand, with its abysmal record on wildlife conservation and its thriving illegal wildlife trade, does not deserve any legitimization whatsoever. I doubt it ever will.