The Namibian Professional Hunting Association (NAPHA), along with other conservationists, has welcomed the bold move by Chinese authorities to gradually stop the processing and sale of ivory for commercial purposes by the end of 2017.
The Executive Committee of NAPHA on Tuesday said that, if executed, the closing down of the Chinese ivory market would go a very long way to ensuring the survival of African elephants and expressed hope that the proposed embargo would also expand to include other threatened species.
According to the association, the Chinese embargo on elephant trading will be of great benefit to Namibia and trophy hunting in general.
A herd of elephants slap a layer of thick mud and dust over their skin - in the same way as we apply sun block. /CFP Photo
"The number of Chinese trophy hunters is minimal when compared to hunters from other countries. In addition, the number of elephants hunted by international trophy hunters is little when compared to other forms of elephant mortalities, such as poaching, natural deaths, human/wildlife conflict," NAPHA explained.
The association said the move will, however, lessen the pressure placed on the elephant population.
Meanwhile, NAPHA noted that, despite the move by China, the Chinese ivory market is negligible when compared to the greatest threats faced by the African elephant, which include the loss of habitat, human/wildlife conflict and bush meat poaching which are set to remain and will not be affected by the Chinese ban.
Mothers from the animal kingdom are full of tender love for their young. And their babies are clearly wild about them too. Even the hardest of hearts would melt seeing the babies follow their mums around, copying their every move and snuggling up for a cuddle. /CFP Photo
Founded in 1974, NAPHA is an organization for sustainable utilization of wildlife resources dedicated to promote Namibia as a hunting destination internationally and protect the right to hunt locally.
(With inputs from Xinhua News Agency)