Mauritius continues to be one of the world’s largest exporters of long-tailed macaques for the research industry. Latest figures released by the Ministry of Agro-Industry Mauritius, show that between January and September 2013, 4,240 long-tailed macaques were exported to research laboratories around the world, including to the UK, USA, France, Spain and Germany.
The Mauritius trade in long-tailed macaques to supply the research industry is reported to be worth 371 million Rupees (or £7.4 million) annually. The latest figures show a 2% increase in the number of monkeys exported between the first nine months of 2013 compared to that of 2012.
As a result of the ‘Save our Monkeys’ campaign launched by the BUAV, there is growing national and international awareness and concern regarding the cruel exploitation of the monkeys of Mauritius. The campaign has received support from leading religious and socio-cultural groups in Mauritius, and to date over 36,000 people have signed the global Avaaz petition by the BUAV, calling upon the Prime Minister Dr. The Honourable Navinchandra Ramgoolam to end this trade. In response to the BUAV ‘Cargo Cruelty’ campaign, many passenger airlines have stopped transporting monkeys destined for research. Air France is now the only passenger airline that exports the monkeys from Mauritius for the international research industry.
The BUAV is continuing to raise concerns with politicians and the public about the proposed Pre-Clinical Research Bill that is due to be presented to the Mauritius Parliament. The introduction of Bill, with the establishment of experimentation facilities in the country, will essentially turn Mauritius into a bio-island, inflicting further unnecessary suffering on the country’s primate population.
BUAV Chief Executive, Michelle Thew, stated: ‘These latest figures are shocking and represent a trade in misery and suffering for thousands of primates every year. The leading role Mauritius plays in this trade reflects negatively on a country that promotes itself internationally as a holiday paradise island. We urge the people of Mauritius to speak out and join the growing number of people who want to see Mauritius ban the cruel monkey trade.’