Vietnam political commitment building

Education for Nature Vietnam (ENV)

ENV’s policy and legislative team was established in 2008 and works to build support amongst key government decision-makers in the National Assembly, relevant Ministries and amongst provincial leaders to help formulate policy and strengthen legislation and enforcement aimed at protecting wildlife. These efforts have resulted in significant impacts on criticalnational wildlife policy and legislationsuch as strengthening of wildlife protection laws and closing loopholes, advocating favorable decisions by the government on major policy issues presented by ENV, and established important precedents on key aspects of enforcement policy at the national and provincial level.

Environmental Investigation Agency, UK (EIA)

EIA published a report in the lead up to the Hanoi Conference on Illegal Wildlife Trade in November 2016 examining how 15 countries including China, Laos, Thailand and Vietnam – had implemented their commitments under the London Declaration of February 2014. This report utilized specific indicators developed by EIA to assess the countries’ actions. EIA continues to review progress made in implementation of the London Declaration particularly by China, Laos and Vietnam.

EIA investigative products are used by a number of stakeholders to push for greater commitment by consumer countries to enforce wildlife crime laws pertaining to the trade in Asian big cats and ivory – see above description in the law enforcement support section.


Freeland has a Memorandum of Understanding with the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Assembly (AIPA) that commits the two organizations to collaborate to strengthen and harmonize legislation across the 10 ASEAN Member States on combating wildlife crime. Using the Freeland-produced ASEAN Handbook on Combating Wildlife Crime, a Freeland-led Legal Support Task Force (that also includes National University of Singapore and ASEAN-WEN) provides technical training and support to parliamentarians and their staff who are responsible for writing laws and policies. Freeland also provides technical support to the AIPA Secretariat to mobilize interest among politicians and media across ASEAN to suppress wildlife trafficking.


Humane Society International (HSI)

HSI has been helping the Vietnam CITES Management Authority (VN CITES MA) to meet Vietnam’s commitments to implementing CITES since 2013. In addition to the activities described above and below, HSI has provided assistance to the VN CITES MA to: attend CITES meetings and to hold side events at those meetings, to visit their counterparts in other countries and to sign bi-lateral MOUs on cooperation on combatting wildlife trafficking and implementation of CITES, and to host international meetings such as the first pangolin range States meeting in 2015 which was key to achieving CITES Appendix I protection for all eight species of pangolins at the 2016 CITES meeting of the Conference of the Parties. HSI also partnered with the VN CITES MA on Vietnam’s first public destruction of ivory and rhino horn in 2016; the event served both to demonstrate Vietnam’s commitment to ending wildlife trafficking and also to educate the public about this problem via the dozens of press stories surrounding the event. As a result of this event, for the first time, ivory seized in Vietnam was sampled for DNA testing by the world’s leading authority on documenting the origin of trafficked ivory, adding valuable information to the international database that allows enforcement authorities in Africa to uncover wildlife trafficking networks.


INTERPOL’s Environmental Security Sub-Directorate seeks to promote the prioritization of work by national police services on environmental crime issues. See also the above INTERPOL reference in the section concerning support of law enforcement (national level).


TRAFFIC research based on seizure, market and intelligence data analysis drives onward communication of actionable information and is used to advocate necessary legislative reforms and increase the effectiveness of law enforcement interventions – see reference in the national level law enforcement support section above.

United for Wildlife (UfW)

UfW strives to build political commitment to end wildlife trafficking, and The Duke of Cambridge has raised this issue with national governments in source, transit and consumer nations. For example, The Duke of Cambridge attended the Hanoi Illegal Wildlife Trade conference in November 2016 – see below section on consumer demand reduction for additional details. The Duke of Cambridge participated in the initial Illegal Wildlife Trade Conference in London in 2014, which resulted in the London Declaration. The 2014 conference was attended by representatives from China, Laos and Vietnam.

United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

UN Environment and UNDP, in partnership with other UN agencies such as UNODC and the CITES Secretariat, along with the Global Wildlife Program, will convene an Africa-Asia Symposium on Strengthening Legal Frameworks to Combat Wildlife Crime in Bangkok in July 2017. The symposium is expected to bring together up to 10 countries from Africa and 10 from Asia to discuss criteria for effective legal frameworks and priority issues to strengthen application of national laws to wildlife crime.

United Nations Environment Programme (UN Environment)

UN Environment, in partnership with the United Nations Development Programme and others, will convene an Africa-Asia Symposium on Strengthening Legal Frameworks to Combat Wildlife Crime in Bangkok on 4-5 July 2017 (the Symposium). The key objective of the Symposium is to advance efforts in Africa and Asia Pacific to strengthen and harmonize legal frameworks to combat wildlife crime. Participants will discuss their countries’ experience with developing and enacting laws that address wildlife crime, and debate proposed criteria and recommended minimum requirements for strengthening legislation that governs the multiple aspects of wildlife crime. Opportunities to strengthen political will to combat wildlife crime through the strategic engagement of parliamentarians from Africa and Asia Pacific will also be explored as a secondary objective. The Symposium will support the participation of 20 representatives from Africa and Asia Pacific, and more if additional resources can be mobilized. Target participants will be senior government officials who are responsible for developing or strengthening laws and regulations relevant to combating wildlife crime. Vietnam is proposed for inclusion in the Symposium.

UN Environment supports the Ministry of National Resources and Environment (MONRE) in reviewing and strengthening of legislation and policy frameworks on forestry and biodiversity in Vietnam. UN Environment is in discussions with the Ministry on the scope of the review, and proposals and alignment with other initiatives.

United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC)

UNODC, through its Global Programme for Combating Wildlife and Forest Crime, works with national legal systems and law enforcement agencies of Member States (which in ASEAN includes Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Thailand, Philippines and Vietnam) to strengthen legislative frameworks, shape policy, enhance knowledge and capacities, and increase regional cooperation to combat wildlife and forest crime. In October 2015, the ASEAN Ministerial Meeting on Transnational Crime agreed to include “wildlife and timber trafficking” as a priority crime under the purview of the Senior Officials Meeting on Transnational Crime (SOMTC). In June 2016, UNODC worked in cooperation with Thailand and the Royal Thai Police to convene a regional conference to bring the SOMTC focal points on wildlife and timber trafficking together to agree on a work programme. The Work Programme to Combat Wildlife and Timber Trafficking will be integrated with the existing SOMTC 2016-18 Work Programme to implement the ASEAN Plan of Action to Combat Transnational Crime. In parallel, UNODC is also encouraging the establishment of a SOMTC working group on wildlife and timber trafficking to coordinate implementation of the Work Programme.

UNODC implemented the ICCWC Wildlife and Forest Crime Analytic Toolkit in Vietnam in 2015, with the participation of relevant Government stakeholders across the country. The findings of the report reflected the strengths and challenges of Vietnam’s capacity to respond to wildlife and forest crime, and a set of 50 recommendations provide a basis for the design of capacity building and technical assistance programmes in Vietnam.

UNODC hosted a Laos-Vietnam policy dialogue in April 2016 to improve the response of trafficking of natural resources across land borders. It was the first policy dialogue meeting on this issue between the two countries. Participants identified a framework of challenges and solutions to improve international cooperation, focusing on trade and regulations, and law enforcement and corruption.

UNODC organized a press conference in Vietnam to highlight World Environment Day in 2016, in cooperation with representatives from the Ministry of Public Security, Supreme People’s Procuracy, the General Department of Vietnam Customs, and the United Nations Resident Coordinator, to call for an end to wildlife trafficking.

USAID Wildlife Asia

USAID Wildlife Asia will seek to build commitment by engaging high levels of the judiciary in the region. See above section on law enforcement support (national level) for additional information.


WildAid’s consumer demand campaign targeting ivory is also assisting inbuilding commitment by the Government of Thailand – see section below concerning consumer demand.