BEIJING – China and the United Kingdom have agreed to cooperate in the fight against illegal trafficking of animals, the British Prime Minister’s office said in a statement on Thursday.
Theresa May is on the second day of a three-day state visit to China.
“I am proud of the agreement that the UK and China have made to boost our co-operation in the fight against the illegal ivory trade,” May said in the statement.
“We have committed to using all the levers at our disposal to lobby for other countries to implement domestic bans and stamp out this abhorrent practice,” she added.
The plan for joint action comes a month after a law banning ivory trade and its derivative products came into effect in China.
In the UK, a recent government proposal to ban the sale of ivory has received 70,000 responses in favor, according to the statement.
China and other nations in East Asia have traditionally been large markets for ivory, fueling an illegal trade which leads to some 30,000 elephants being killed annually for their tusks.
Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said on Thursday that her country would continue with its efforts to protect the planet, and underlined its growing global role in environmental protection.