6 Dec 2011

Solomons govt to investigate illegal dolphins export

7:59 pm on 6 December 2011

The Ministry of Fisheries in Solomon Islands has launched an investigation into the recent illegal export of live dolphins to China.

Twenty-five bottlenose dolphins were flown from Honiara to Guangdong Province last week, bound for a marine mammal park.

The dolphin exporter did not have a valid export permit.

The Acting Director of the Ministry of Fisheries, James Terry, has confirmed that the dolphins were illegally exported.

Mr Terry says it is a priority that the Fisheries Ministry resolves the issue.

"We are launching an investigation to confirm that the company did have a valid licence but they never got a permit of export from this ministry, and we didn't issue that to them."

Mr Terry says the Fisheries Ministry has put forward a draft regulation to make live dolphin exports from the Solomons illegal as of January 2012.