The illegal wildlife market is worth up to $US23 billion a year. And Australia may be encouraging the trade by accepting domestic ivory and rhino horn sales in the country. As per latest reports Australia will be soon placing a ban on ivory and rhino horn trade in the country as an attempt to save endangered elephant and rhinoceros species worldwide.
Australian delegates to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) announced Australia’s commitment at its 18th summit in Geneva. “Australia has already ensured that all our international trade is in strict compliance with CITES regulations. Australia’s domestic market does not represent a major threat to world ivory trade but it is important to ensure there are no back doors to encourage illegal activity by those seeking to circumvent CITES principles,” Environment Minister Sussan Ley said in a statement.
The parliament’s law enforcement committee had recommended the same ban last year. The committee had made altogether 10 recommendations on how the ban can be enforced and suggested taking a leaf on UK’s ivory and Rhino horn trade ban practices. There are, however, a few exclusions. Among the exemptions suggested by the committee were musical instruments made before 1975 with less than 20 per cent ivory or rhino horn content, and special provisions for art institutions.
The International Fund for Animal Welfare told the committee 20,000 to 50,000 elephants were being killed for their ivory each year, while more than 1,000 rhinos were killed for their horns in 2017.