The Comment of Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesman on the Implementation of China' Ivory Ban

Q: Since China' ivory ban took effect on January 1, many African countries, wildlife protection organizations and news media have spoken highly of this measure. Could you tell us more as regards the implementation of this measure?

A: We have also taken note of the relevant reports as well as the responses from African countries. At the Johannesburg Summit of the Forum of China-Africa Cooperation in 2015, China pledged to support Africa in wildlife protection and in fighting illegal trading and poaching of wildlife. We Chinese people always keep our promises.

Since 2015, the Chinese government rolled out measures to suspend importing ivory carvings, hunting trophies and ivories and ivory products acquired before the coming-into-effect of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. On December 31, 2017, further measures were implemented to stop the commercial processing and selling of ivories in China. So far, all of the 34 processing units and 143 retailing venues have been shut down.

Such decisive measures were well acclaimed by the African countries. They believe that China's practical measures will help cut off ivory trade at its source, and will have far-reaching impacts on protecting Africa's elephant species and the eco-systems of Africa and the whole world, and contributing to the closing-down of major international ivory trade markets.

I want to stress again that as a party to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, China is committed to honoring its obligations. A full ban on ivory trade is another contribution we made to support the cause of wildlife protection of Africa. We stand ready to cooperate with African countries and the international community to do a better work at fighting against poaching and illegal trading in wildlife.

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