Delivery companies sign pact against services for illegal wildlife trade


Liu Caiyu, The Global Times

Date Published

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Fourteen delivery companies including SF Express and DHL signed a pact on Tuesday promising to refuse services for illegal trade of wildlife and related products, aiming to curb the illegal trade of wildlife and protect biodiversity.

Delivery companies are required to strictly abide by domestic laws and regulations on protecting wildlife and products, launch training sessions for staff and actively cooperate with public security departments, according to a voluntary code of practice at a signing ceremony organized by World Wildlife Fund (WWF), China Express Association and China Wildlife Conservation Association on Tuesday. 

The 14 delivery companies, including 12 domestic and two international delivery companies, cover nearly 90 percent of nationwide delivery business. EMS, YTO Express, JD Logistics and FedEx are among the 14 delivery companies that signed the voluntary code of practice on Tuesday. 

In recent years, some international criminal groups have used ocean shipping services to traffic wildlife to Southeast Asian regions and then transfer them to manufacturers or consumers via domestic delivery channel, said Zhou Fei, chief program officer of WWF China.

Jiao Zheng, deputy secretary general of China Express Association said delivery companies should strengthen their efforts on identifying wildlife and prevent their staff from participating in the illegal trade. 

Lü Gaowei, the director responsible for environmental health and safety at SF Express said that his company will increase the inspection of delivery services for wildlife during collection, and strengthen inspection when packages are being transferred to intermediary locations. 

Staff who fail to prevent the delivery services for illegal trade of wildlife and related products will be punished, and if the violation is severe they can be fired, Lü said. 

But Lü said that logistics companies face challenges including lack of equipment to identify wildlife products. “Live animals are easy to be identified but the current security checking equipment cannot accurately screen wildlife products. All delivery companies are faced with this dilemma.” 

Authorities in South China’s Guangdong Province said a delivery company helped them discover nearly 17 kilograms of ivory and its products. The trafficking group purchased the ivory overseas and intended to send the items to China via a delivery company, the Legal Daily reported in April.

China’s delivery business has grown rapidly in recent years and in 2018 delivered more than 50 billion packages.