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Singapore proposes total ivory ban, calls for public feedback

03 / 12 / 2018, Mongabaycom News

The Singapore government has proposed a complete ban on the domestic trade of elephant ivory in the country. The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority (AVA), the agency responsible for safeguarding animal and plant health in Singapore, announced Nov. 28 that the proposed ban, under the Endangered Species (Import and Export) Act, would completely prohibit local businesses and individuals from selling or buying all forms of elephant ivory products in Singapore. Display of elephant ivory in public would also be banned, except when used for educational purposes, such as in museums or zoos. The proposal does not list any other exceptions. AVA has opened its proposal to public comments until Dec. 27 this year. International trade in elephant ivory is banned — Asian elephants were placed on Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) in 1975, while African elephants were added to the list in 1989, prohibiting all global trade in the species and their products. But the ban does not extend to domestic trade. Singapore, while a party to CITES, allows domestic sale and purchase of ivory that’s been proved to have been imported or acquired prior to the elephant species being placed in Appendix I of CITES. The proposed ban aims to put a complete stop to this local trade. The proposal also plans to give stakeholders a three-year grace period during which they can decide what they want to do with their existing stocks of elephant ivory products. “Local businesses and…

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