If you are looking for EIA UK, it's overhere.

Amazon.com is Selling Thousands of Ivory Items as the Slaughter of Africa’s Elephants Intensifies

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Amazon.com has thousands of ads for elephant ivory on its Japanese website despite such sales being banned under Amazon’s policies designed to protect endangered species. This follows last week’s revelation that Google was allowing similar illicit sale of ivory products by its Google Japan Shopping site.

The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), a non profit group based in Washington, DC and London, UK, discovered thousands of ivory products for sale on Amazon’s wholly owned Japanese website even though Amazon.com bans the sale of all ivory products.

This shocking discovery comes as 178 nations meet in Bangkok this week for the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). The gathered nations have struggled to find ways to counter the mass slaughter of elephants across much of Africa for their ivory tusks to supply the burgeoning demand in Asia, particularly Japan and China.

Allan Thornton, EIA’s President said today that “Amazon.com has turned a blind eye to the sale of thousands of ivory products on its Japanese website, further endangering Africa’s already devastated elephant populations. Like Google, Amazon.com has ignored its laudable policies to protect endangered species and turned its back on the massacre of Africa’s elephants. How many more elephants have been killed as a result?”

A letter from the EIA President was couriered to the office of Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos on February 22nd with copies of screenshots showing dozens of the thousands of ivory ads displayed on Amazon Japan. Additional information and weblinks to the ivory products were also provided directly to Amazon Japan. Some ivory products were removed but around 3,000 ads still offer ivory for sale.

Most of the Amazon Japan ivory ads are for “hanko,” which are Japanese name seals used to affix signatures to documents. Hanko sales, a major demand driver for elephant ivory, have contributed to the wide-scale resumption of elephant poaching across Africa. An estimated 35,000 African elephants are now being illegally killed for their tusks each year; however, some scientists believe the numbers are much higher.

Last year EIA and Humane Society International (HSI) revealed how Amazon.com’s Japanese website was selling over 140 whale products, which were removed immediately when EIA and HSI informed Amazon.com of the whale ads. Within two weeks Amazon.com banned the sale of all whale and dolphin products on its websites worldwide.

Amazon.com’s policy specifically states that “Products containing ivory from animals” are prohibited under “Examples of Prohibited Listings.”

The EIA is appealing to Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos to ensure that all Amazon.com promotions of ads for elephant ivory products on its sites are immediately and permanently removed, and that Amazon.com remains vigilant in monitoring and enforcing this policy in the future.

For further information, contact:
Allan Thornton, President, EIA-US: allanthornton@eia-global.org
Lisa Handy, Senior Policy Adviser, EIA-US: lisahandy@eia-global.org

View all Press Releases

Recent Blog Posts

Room for Improvement: Using DNA Analysis to Address Rhino Horn Trafficking
Law enforcement officials from around the world have seized illegal supplies of rhino horn at least once a week on average for the past 10 years. The type of seizure ranges widely. It could be a pair of fresh horns confiscated from poachers who just gunned down a rhino inside a national park. Or possibly dozens of horns were discovered cleverly hidden in an air cargo shipment. Sometime it’s just a few grams of powdered horn found in a traveler’s luggage. Maybe a mix of raw and carved horns was seized after a police raid on a trafficker’s home.
Still Waiting for Action: Tokyo's Ivory Trade Assessment
The reality of the scope and impact of COVID-19 hit home for much of the world when the Tokyo 2020 Games were postponed. A year later and looking far different than ever expected or hoped, the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games finally arrived. As the host of the 2020 Games, Tokyo has come under increased scrutiny for its legal market for elephant ivory. Even as the Games were underway, the influential capital city faced mounting international pressure to close its legal ivory market for good. For World Elephant Day 2021, in between the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics, we take a look at where Tokyo stands in doing its part to protect the world's elephants from the threats of ivory trade and poaching. 

Recent Reports

Letter: NGO Appeal to the Tokyo Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games
: EIA, JTEF, and HSI appeal to the Tokyo 2020 Organising Committee President and Governor of Tokyo to take action to prevent illegal trade and export of elephant ivory products
NGO Appeal to Tokyo for Urgent Measures on Ivory
EIA and 25 international non-government environmental and conservation organizations sent a letter February 18, 2021 to follow up on a previous appeal from March 2020. Our organizations encourage the closure of Tokyo's ivory market and also recommend some actions the Tokyo Metropolitan Government should take before the ivory market can be closed, including during the rescheduled 2020 Olympic Games. The letter can be viewed in English and Japanese.

Recent Press Releases

Tokyo Fumbles Short-Term Ivory Trade Action
Conservation, environmental and animal welfare groups bemoaned measures announced today by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government to address Tokyo’s illegal ivory trade as a missed opportunity. Tokyo’s short-term plan is focused only on consumer awareness and falls dramatically short of expectations for substantive action, instead replicating previous failed awareness efforts by Japan’s national government.
Japanese Retailers Willing to Sell Ivory Hanko for Illegal Export
Investigations of Japanese hanko retailers revealed that many are willing to sell an ivory product knowing that it will be exported internationally despite most being aware that ivory export is illegal.
Follow us @eiaenvironment on twitter for the latest updates!