The Reuters new agency have reported that online auction site eBay are to bring in a worldwide band on the sale of ivory products.

The ban is expected to be fully in force by the new year and comes after a wildlife protection charity, the International Fund for Animal Welfare, reportedly found 4 thousand elephant ivory products listed on the site.

According to Reuters eBay has stated that it would still allow the limited sales certain ivory products. Mainly where the product is an antique containing only small amounts of elephant ivory. The example they gave was an antique piano with ivory keys. Antique items that are made primarily of ivory will not fall under this exception so that things such as ivory jewelry and chess sets will bot be allowed under the new policy.

Elephants are protected under the U.S. Endangered Species Act and the international Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species.

IFAW have welcomed eBay's announcement saying "IFAW congratulates eBay on this very important step to protect elephants. With these findings and eBay’s leadership, there is no doubt left that all Internet dealers need to take responsibility for their impact on endangered species by enacting and enforcing a ban on all online wildlife trade. eBay has set the standard for protecting elephants, now governments and other online dealers need to follow their example"

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