At the final session of a Regional Wildlife and Conservation Conference in Xishuangbanna, Prince William joined delegates from China and other Southeast Asian states. Reflecting on his visit, he spoke about the conservation initiatives that are developing in China, before then addressing the issue of the global illegal wildlife trade.
Prince William commended China for its contribution to CITES and its participation in the London Conference on the Illegal Wildlife Trade in 2014, but added that there is so much more to do. He spoke directly to the government and the people of China, speaking of how “a powerful blow we can strike against traffickers is to reduce the demand for their products. Demand provides traffickers with their incentive. It fuels their greed, and generates their vast profits.”
Tusk’s CEO Charlie Mayhew joined The Duke of Cambridge in China for part of his visit. Writing in The Guardian, he noted:
“The fact that this 32-year old prince has been able to eloquently raise and discuss this issue at the highest possible level with both the presidents of America and China within just four months is an extraordinary achievement and illustrates his unquestionable commitment to the cause.
“As he returns to London, the question that the conservation world now waits to see is whether China will indeed take the next step of banning the ivory trade outright.”