Vice Ministry of Oceans in favor, INCOPESCA Opposed Call to express personal opinions to President Solis

Media Contact:
Randall Arauz

San José, Costa Rica (January 27, 2016) – Confusion! That was the result of a meeting yesterday by the Costa Rican authorities to present the position the country will adopt during the upcoming 2nd Meeting of Signatories (MoSII) of the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) of Migratory Sharks of the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), to be held in Costa Rica next February 15th to 19th. Instead of presenting the official country position, the positions of the Vice Ministry of Oceans and of the Institute of Fisheries (INCOPESCA) were presented. The Vice Minister of Oceans Fernando Mora expressed his intention to further protection for hammerhead, silky and thresher sharks through the CMS. INCOPESCA’s Director José Antonio Porras on the other hand, was emphatically opposed. It was then made clear to those present (authorities, shark fishers, and NGO representatives) that the country had yet to adopt an official position.

The protection of sharks under international conventions such as the United Nations Law of the Sea, the Convention on International Trade of Endangered Species (CITES)and the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS) is a process that Costa Rica has successfully led for over a decade.

“The lack of a national position when we are only two weeks away form the MoSII is quite concerning, not only due to the vast scientific information that supports further protection for these species, but also because INCOPESCA’s opposition results contrary to the Precautionary Principle and the Ecosystem Management Principle, both of which the country has committed to abide by in numerous international conventions”, affirmed Randall Arauz, of the Costa Rican organization PRETOMA. “As for right now, I call on all Costa Rican citizens and citizens of the world, to sign the following petition, and let President Luis Guillermo Solís know our position.

Costa Rican citizens:

Concerned citizens of the world: