The United States Fish and Wildlife Services has made a recommendation which has seen the uplifting of the ban on the elephant hunting and importation of the trophy to the USA.

The announcement was made at the African Wildlife Consultative Forum currently under way in Arusha, Tanzania.

The latest development means Americans can now hunt elephants in the country and import into their country elephant trophies up to the year 2018.

The move serves as a relief to the Campfire programme, under which several communities were suffering loss of human lives, livestock and property.

Safari Operators Association of Zimbabwe President, Mr Emmanuel Fundira expressed optimism that the development will boost business in the hunting and safari sector.

“What it means is that anyone, who was holding on trophies on behalf of clients, will now be able to get the necessary permits for exportation of those trophies. It is also an opportunity to continue marketing our hunts,” he said.

Americans constitute 70% of the hunting market in Campfire areas.

Income for Campfire had decreased significantly from an average of US$2 million per year before the 2014 ban, to US$1,72 million in 2015 and US$1,73 in 2016.