Lawmakers urged to support ivory ban amid biggest tusks haul in 30 years


The Standard

Date Published
The largest seizure of ivory tusks in 30 years once again shows that Hong Kong is a major hub for illegal wildlife trade and highlights the urgent need to end the trade, the World Wide Fund (WWF) said today.

The non-governmental organization urged lawmakers to pass the law and end ivory trade as soon as possible to help stop rampant poaching. The Legislative Council’s bills committee on ivory trade ban will have their first meeting tomorrow.

According to the WWF, the city ranks fifth globally in ivory contraband with 33,000 kilograms seized between 2000 and 2013. The latest seizure is almost one-tenth of the recorded ivory stock in Hong Kong, the organization said.

The WWF believe that ivory trade ban should be imposed immediately with no compensation and tougher penalties such as a minimum 10 years imprisonment for illegal wildlife trade are also required.

“With 20,000 elephants killed in Africa every year, there is no time to waste.”