03 Apr Stephen Metcalfe MP Welcomes Ban on Ivory Sales
Stephen Metcalfe, Member of Parliament for South Basildon and East Thurrock, welcomed today’s announcement from Environment Secretary Michael Gove that the UK will introduce a ban on ivory sales. The proposed ban will be the toughest in Europe and amongst the toughest in the world – helping to protect elephants for future generations.
The move follows a consultation which had more than 70,000 responses – with over 88 percent in favour of the ban.
The UK has long been a global leader in the international fight against the illegal ivory trade. But over the last decade, the number of elephants has declined by almost a third and around 20,000 a year are still being slaughtered due to the global demand for ivory – showing there is more to do.
Stephen Metcalfe said: “This announcement confirms that this Conservative Government will make every effort to halt the heart-breaking decline in Africa’s elephant population in recent years.
“We need to leave our planet in a better state for the next generation, with stronger protections for animal welfare, but also cleaner air, greener spaces and tougher action on plastic waste.”
As part of the action to tackle the Ivory trade, at a recent European Environment Council, the UK called for EU member states to ban commercial trade in raw ivory – which is already banned in the UK – within the EU as soon as possible.
Following on from the ground breaking conference on the illegal wildlife trade held in London in 2014, the UK will host the fourth international conference on the illegal wildlife trade in October. This will bring global leaders to London to tackle the strategic challenges of the trade.