Ivory
China is the world's largest importer and user of elephant ivory tusks. Photo Credit: Gavin Shire/USFWS from WikiCommons.

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According to news agency Reuters, China's Forestry Administration said the country will shut 67 carving factories and stores with the remaining 105 outlets to be shut before the end of the year.

China is the world's largest importer and user of elephant ivory tusks and officials from the UN Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species will witness the shutdown.

Price Drop

The price of ivory in China has dropped by almost two thirds since the country revealed plans to end the legal trade.

However concerns remain that trade in new ivory in Asia will continue because Hong Kong, a market which is driven by Chinese consumers, has set a five-year period to ban ivory.

Wildlife organization WildAid said markets like Hong Kong had provided "laundering mechanisms for poached ivory and perpetuated the demand".