The ivory bill was given Royal Assent in December to become the Ivory Act and will become law later in 2019.

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link to the online survey is being sent to members of dealer bodies BADA, LAPADA, the Antiquities Dealers’ Association (ADA) and auctioneer association SOFAA this week, but is also open to anyone with an interest in antique ivory.

Results will be collated into a report that may be used as part of a legal challenge to the act.

Independent research

BADA, with the support of the other associations, has commissioned the survey from independent research company Woodnewton.

Respondents, whose identities will not be revealed to BADA or in the report, are asked for summaries of the financial impact on any holdings of ivory items restricted by the ban.

LAPADA chief executive Freya Simms said the dealer association "believes it is critical to assess the real impact to our members of the ivory ban coming into force.

"We also think that data from an independent market research company will be most valuable in the event of a legal challenge," she added.

Data gathering

Before completing the 10-minute survey, dealers, auctioneers and collectors are asked to consult their stock books, catalogues or insurance schedules to have data to hand.

“We know that some people have been selling items in their collections or stock before the legislation is implemented and others have held onto the items, with the prospect of them becoming unsaleable,” BADA wrote to its members today. “The survey data will be used to produce a report aggregating all these losses.” 

Despite the act’s exemptions, “the commercial sale of many thousands of genuine antique objects that happen to incorporate 10% or more ivory will become illegal,” BADA said. 

“Whether it’s chess sets, silver teapots, ivory fans or Chinese carved figures, we believe the impact on some owners of these historical items will be significant.”

The deadline for responses is February 11.

Those wishing to take part can click on the survey link: Economic Impact of the Ivory Act 2018