Taiwan has introduced a bill that will ban all domestic ivory trade effective January 1, 2020. Amendments to the Wildlife Conservation Act will make it illegal to sell or purchase ivory in the jurisdiction.

Violators will face prison sentences ranging from six months to five years, and fines up to NT$1 million (US$34,222). Before coming into effect, the bill is in a 60-day public consultation period.

Also this week, the UK announced tighter restrictions on ivory limiting trade to very few exceptions, such as museum antiquities. A public consultation there received 70,000 responses, 88% of which were in favor of a comprehensive ivory ban.

The actions by the U.K. follow domestic ivory bans in mainland China and the US. Hong Kong SAR also recently announced plans to phase out the ivory trade.

“The UK and other jurisdictions are following mainland China’s lead in banning the ivory trade, which will provide much-needed relief to Africa’s elephants,” said WildAid CEO Peter Knights.

“Now all attention should be on Japan, which continues to have a weakly-regulated ivory trade, as the last step to consigning this destructive trade to history,” Knights said.

In recent years, up to 33,000 African elephants have been killed annually for their ivory tusks. WildAid’s campaigns with high-profile ambassadors raise awareness about the poaching crisis in order to reduce consumer demand for ivory.

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About WildAid

WildAid is a non-profit organization with a mission to protect wildlife from illegal trade and other imminent threats. While most wildlife conservation groups focus on protecting animals from poaching, WildAid primarily works to reduce global consumption of wildlife products such as elephant ivory, rhino horn and shark fin soup. With an unrivaled portfolio of celebrity ambassadors and a global network of media partners, WildAid leverages more than $308 million in annual pro-bono media support with a simple message: When the Buying Stops, the Killing Can Too. 

Journalists on deadline may email communications@wildaid.org