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Exploring the Trade of Ivory in China, Majority of Chinese Consumers (Research Paper Sample)


Exploring the trade of ivory in china


Ivory Trade in China
Ivory Trade in China
For the first time in the history of China, the government has formulated measure to wipe out domestic production and trade in ivory products. Many of the conservative groups in China and around the world have indicated that this is the "single greatest measure" in the war against ivory business and a noble move to save hundreds of elephants from Africa from poachers (Samper, 2015).
During an event in China on 30th May in Beijing, 662 kilograms of impounded ivory were burnt in front of foreign diplomats by China’s head of state forestry Mr. Zhao Shucong. Zhao stated that China will stringently control processing and trade in ivory up to the moment when ivory business is totally stopped (Karl, 2015). This signaled the first taken by the Chinese government to halt the legal local ivory industry.
For many years, China has been the main destination for illegal trade in ivory and was noted as a key player fueling the rising trend in illicit trade in ivory. This is an infamous title that China has held since 1951, and that continue to taint its image in the international arena ((Press Associate, 2015). The problem of illicit ivory business in China is aggravated by its burgeoning economy that has significantly increased the consumer spending power (Karl, 2015). In addition, access to ivory particularly from third world countries that do not have stringent policies on protection of wildlife has created an excellent ground for ivory trade.
The announcement by the Chinese authorities that the country is going to stop the processing and domestic trade in ivory is going to have tremendous effects on the rapidly decreasing number of elephants in Africa. Unlike diamond the most valuable of the precious metals- ivory has been valued and used in China for hundreds of years (Rosen, 2012). The Atlantic has established that artistic ivory figurines have existed in China as early as the 6th BC. The Shang Empire that existed between 1600-1046 B.C is recognized as one of the dynasties that developed carving tradition (Grammaticas, 2015). Their specimens have been excavated and can be seen in different museums around the world.
However, it is important to note that Ivory was not only valued for its aesthetic worth, its key features- absence of splintering, durability and ease with which it could be imprinted- exceptionally suitable it for a range of uses (Rosen, 2012). Historians have excavated many ancient tools carved from ivory such as spear tips, combs, buttons, handles, bow tips, and buckles. More recently Chinese have used ivory to make piano keys, although its production was halted in 1972 (Grammaticas, 2015).
China has a population of more than one billion people and the rising proportion of the middle class means that the domestic and global demand for ivory is increasing enormously. More people than ever before can now afford the highly valued ivory products. There is a direct relationship between the rising demand for ivory products and the rate of poaching in the world. It is estimated that 70 percent of the ivory stock in the globe out of poaching is usually destined for People Republic of China (Rosen, 2012).
It is true that many of the products used in the modern world are made of plastics, but for thousands of years, ivory was the main materials used for the production of these items. This has propelled some historians to coin the term pre-20th century plastic to describe ivory.
Majority of Chinese consumers can now afford these products that are highly valued by everyone in the country. Many Chinese also think ivory makes them lucky while others it is just one of the unique ways of displaying their status in the society. Many more consider it as an excellent investment, and some even give ivory and ivory products as a bribe for business contract (Rosen, 2012). Halting the illicit ivory business in China will eliminate the cloak behind which the unlawful industry has been hiding. In addition, China pronouncement will spark analogous commitments from countries in the Asia (Samper, 2015). China must ensure that it keeps part of its bargain and wipe out ivory industries within its borders if any meaningful development is going to be achieved. Destruction of confiscated ivory is not the end of the matter; the Chinese authority must formulate measure to stamp out unlawful trafficking by imposing hefty fines, asset seizures and long jail terms for all perpetrators and players in this illegal business (Samper, 2015).
The international community must also redouble its efforts to improving the protection of species that are threatened by this business. All countries must make deliberate efforts to destroying criminal networks that are driving the ivory business, especially in Africa (Samper, 2015). Consumers in China can also join the i...
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