Can China's ivory trade ban save elephants?

He would buy the raw ivory and then have it turned into the pendants, paperweights and statues that once filled shelf after shelf in his shop, as well as the much larger, elaborately carved whole tusks proudly displayed on plinths of their own.

It is a deeply symbolic moment, a "game changer" according to campaigners, with one of the most high profile and vocal, the UK's Prince William, publically applauding the Chinese government's decision as "an important commitment".

Now, although there are undoubtedly other factors at play - not least the slowing Chinese economy and the crackdown on official graft and gift giving - the announcement of the ban on the legal trade does appear to be helping to bring the speculative frenzy to an end.

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