On Wednesday, January 31, 2018, the Hong Kong lawmakers overwhelmingly voted for the bill to ban ivory sales in Hong Kong by 2021. Hong Kong seized over seven tonnes of tusks worth more than $9 million in 2017 and researchers said that Hong Kong is the world’s biggest retail ivory market. Wildlife activists have applauded the Hong Kong lawmakers, stating that the move will drastically reduce the poaching which resulted in the yearly killing of tens of thousands of elephants and threatens the lives of park rangers in Africa. The bill stipulated stiffer penalties to discourage smuggling of ivory and other highly endangered species. According to the report, the new law will take effect in stages, while full ban will take effect at the end of 2021 after traders’ current licenses expire. offenders of this law will pay a maximum fine of HK$10 million ($1.3 million) and 10 years’ imprisonment. China also banned the sale of elephant tusks last year (2016).
Source: Viewers Corner News.