Ban To Stop Polar Bear Pelt Trade Is Defeated

Canada News, Bear Hunting Magazine

A proposal by the United States to ban across the border trading of polar bears and their parts was defeated at an international Cites meeting in Thailand. The vote was 38 in favor, 42 against and 46 abstentions, far short of the two-thirds needed to pass. The result was a victory for the indigenous Inuit.

Delegates rejected the proposal to change the polar bear's status from a species whose trade is regulated, not banned. Three years ago, a similar proposal was defeated.

There are an estimated 15,000-20,000 polar bears living in the Canadian Arctic. According to Inuit representatives, the pelts from around 300 bears are sold for rugs each year at an average of $4,850 per pelt. Other parts including fangs and paws are also exported. For the Inuit, this is a critical economic resource.

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