PH being used as processing center of ivory tusks from Asian countries
MANILA, Philippines – Ivory tusks that go to the country are being processed here and exported as finished products to other Asian countries, a wildlife protection officer said Thursday.
Director Mundita Lim of the Protected Areas and Wildlife Bureau (PAWB) said in an interview over Radyo Inquirer 990AM that they have recorded seizures of ivory tusks coming into the country as far back as 1996.
“These are brought out of the country to China and other east Asian countries … as finished products,” Lim said citing reports from the Wildlife Enforcement Network of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean).
Seized tusks from airports or seaport by the Bureau of Customs are turned over to the PAWB, she said. But there were cases when some of the tusks went missing.
“There were some tusks in their custody that could no longer be accounted for,” she said. There was also a case when some tusks already with PAWB were stolen by one of their personnel.
“There was no sign of forced break-in and those stolen were replaced with fake elephant tusks,” Lim said.
The price of Ivory in the international market is $100 to $250 per kilogram, Lim said.
Listen to the full interview over Radyo Inquirer 990AM
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