Travel companies threatened with closure over bear bile tours
Courtesy of Education for Nature Vietnam c/o The World Society for the Protection of Animals
On March 1, after receiving ENV’s Wildlife Crime Bulletin featuring an article about the bear owners in Quang Ninh who continued to extract bear bile for Korean tourists, the Quang Ninh Department of Culture, Sport and Tourism issued a circular No: 282/SVHTTDL-TTr instructing tourist agencies, head offices and branches of any tourist agencies in Quang Ninh not to take tourists to bear-keeping places, to inform and warn tourists not to visit bear farms, buy bear bile or bear products as this breaks Vietnam law and CITES regulations on international trade of wildlife. Tour guides who take tourists to bear farms will be identified and strictly dealt with.
On March 11, the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism issued an instruction No. 210/TCDL-LH to all provincial Departments of Culture, Sports and Tourism that prohibits organizing any tours to bear farms. International travel companies were also warned they could lose the company’s International Travel Business License if they continue organizing tours of this type.