Chinese Customs destroys half a ton of ivory worth £3m

ivory2-634x330Chinese authorities destroyed more than half a tonne of confiscated ivory in Beijing here the other day. The public event, organised by the Chinese State Forestry Administration and the Customs Department, is set to display the country’s determination to ‘further protect wild animals’, according to the People’s Daily Online.

A whopping 662kg (1,460lb) of illegal ivory and ivory products were ground into powder as part of the central government’s crackdown on the illegal trade. The destroyed ivory items include thousands of ornaments, jewellery and fine art pieces. Whole elephant tusks were carved into the images of Buddhas, goddesses or Chinese landscapes.

Members of the media and diplomats were invited to attend the public destruction, which took place at Beijing Wild Animals Rescue Centre, as Chinese authorities hope to rid the country’s reputation of a global trading hub for illegal elephant tusks.

According to the country’s Forestry Administration, raw tusks sell for at least 41,667 Yuan (£4,400) per kilogram, making the total value of this destruction around £3 million. Source: Customs Today