China says it will shut down ivory trade by end of 2017

FILE - In this file photo taken Friday, Sept. 30, 2016, an elephant walks through the bush at the Southern African Wildlife College on the edge of Kruger National Park in South Africa. The Chinese government said in a statement released on Friday Dec. 30, 2016, it will shut down its official ivory trade at the end of 2017 in a move designed to curb the mass slaughter of African elephants.(AP Photo/Denis Farrell, FILE)

China says it will shut down its ivory trade by the end of 2017 in a move designed to curb the mass slaughter of African elephants

JOHANNESBURG — China says it plans to shut down its ivory trade by the end of 2017 in a move designed to curb the mass slaughter of African elephants.

The Chinese government will end the processing and selling of ivory and ivory products by the end of March as it phases out the legal trade, according to a statement released on Friday.

China had previously announced it planned to shut down the commercial trade, which conservationists described as significant because China's vast, increasingly affluent consumer market drives much of the elephant poaching across Africa.

"This is a game changer for Africa's elephants," said Aili Kang, the Asia director for the New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society.

China, which has supported an ivory-carving industry as part of its cultural heritage, said carvers will be encouraged to change their activities and work, for example, in the restoration of artifacts for museums. More efforts will be made to stop the illegal trade, the statement said.

China has allowed trade in ivory acquired before a 1989 ban on the ivory trade by the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, which seeks to regulate the multi-billion-dollar trade in wild animals and plants.

China also permits trade from a one-time, CITES-approved purchase by China and Japan of an ivory stockpile from several African countries in 2008.

Conservation groups say China's illegal trade has since flourished and that criminal syndicates have used the legal Chinese market as cover for their illicit business in tusks.

The number of Africa's savannah elephants dropped by about 30 percent from 2007 to 2014, to 352,000, because of poaching, according to a study published this year. Forest elephants, which are more difficult to count, are also under severe threat.

___

Follow Christopher Torchia on Twitter at www.twitter.com/torchiachris

Peaple also read these

Egypt, Sudan, Ethiopia fail to agree on Nile...

May 8, 2018

An Egyptian official says Egypt, Sudan and Ethiopia have again failed to make progress on their...

Roaming telescope brings Kenyan kids views of...

Feb 19, 2017

The Traveling Telescope project visits some of Kenya's most remote areas, showing students the...

Kenya's deadly land invasions blamed on political...

Aug 6, 2017

Kenya's deadly land invasions blamed on political incitement as tense elections approach

At least 44 killed as dam bursts in Kenya,...

May 10, 2018

At least 44 killed as dam bursts in Kenya, with another 40 still missing; hundreds flee

Nigerian kidnappers demand $200,000 for German...

Feb 24, 2017

A worker at a Nigerian excavation site says kidnappers are demanding a ransom of 60 million naira...

About Us

Delivering news from all over the globe, StarJournal keeps you abreast with the greatest minds in science, be it researchers, theorists or even popularizers.

Contact us: sales[at]starjournals.com

Subscribe Now!