Rhino poaching has already risen by 18 percent, and it's only halfway through the year. Yet the South African Department of Environmental Affairs (DEA) continues their push of legal trade, unabated.
Aside from the usual and obvious arguments with legal trade, there are three definitive reasons why legal trade would fail:
Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) representatives, including China's, have recommended against it. In fact, Wan Ziming, the head of China's representing party at CITES, told Oxpeckers he was concerned that "the legitimate horn supply would be insufficient to meet the demand."
Without the backing from CITES, trade could not happen. "With almost every country having banned rhino horn, I have no idea of any country that would be willing to import rhino horn stockpile from South Africa,"said Ziming.
Past one-off sales
In 2008, South Africa initiated a one-off sale of stored ivory. This brief sale, though legal, renewed interest and increased demand within the Chinese culture. Ivory prices skyrocketed, but the "legal supply" was exhausted.