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Ivory prices down after ban, activists fear stockpiling

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The Guardian reports that “the price of raw ivory in Asia has fallen dramatically” since the Chinese government banned the domestic legal ivory trade at the end of 2016. The Wildlife Justice Commission (WJC) has been collecting ivory prices in Hanoi, Vietnam, for the past three years: In 2015, raw ivory was being sold for an average of US$1,322 per kilogram; this dropped to $750 per kilogram by October 2016, and down to $660 per kilogram in February this year.

Despite the fall in prices, the numbers of elephants being poached have not fallen, and there are worries that speculators are stockpiling ivory while it’s cheap, meaning that there will be no reduction in demand.


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Lucas Niewenhuis

Lucas Niewenhuis is an associate editor at SupChina who helps curate daily news and produce the company's newsletter, app, and website content. Previously, Lucas researched China-Africa relations at the Social Science Research Council and interned at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. He has studied Chinese language and culture in Shanghai and Beijing, and is a graduate of the University of Michigan.