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The Third Multi-stakeholder Forum on "Sustainable Forest Governance and Timber Trade Monitoring"

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     The third multi-stakeholder forum on "Sustainable Forest Governance and Timber Trade Monitoring" on October 21, 2020, was organized by the Center for Sustainable Rural Development (SRD), in collaboration with the Department of Forestry (VNFOREST) ​​and funded by the European Union (EU). The forum is not only a common space for all parties (government agencies, CSOs, and enterprises) to share and update information on forest governance and VPA, but also identify opportunities and challenges, especially for CSOs, in implementing and monitoring VPA/FLEGT.

Members of the Forum's Chairmen Board included: Mr. Matthieu Penot - Trade Cooperation Advisor of the European Union Delegation in Vietnam, Mr. Pham Van Dien - Deputy Director of the Vietnam Administration of Forestry and Mrs. Vu Thi Bich Hop – SRD’s Director cum President of VNGO-FLEGT and VNGO-CC network. The forum also acknowledged the participation of 60 delegates who came from departments under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, NGOs, SMEs, local associations and research institutions, and universities.

 

      At the beginning of the Forum, Mrs. Vu Thi Bich Hop reviewed the itinerary of NGOs to join VPA/FLEGT. She commented that the current NGOs overcame a difficult period and started to develop into a more confident period. At the same time, she also outlined the plan for the future associated with the EVFTA project construction.

 

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       In his speech, Mr. Matthieu Penot expressed his expectation that the VPA and EVFTA Agreement would contribute to ending the situation of transporting timber which is very complicated in Vietnam nowadays. According to him, the two Agreements above will bring many benefits, aiming to ensure that Vietnam's timber is exported to the EU legally in the near future. Along with that, the task of monitoring forest governance and sustainable timber trade should be put in coordination with all parties such as authorities, people, CSOs, and businesses.

 

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       The forum has recorded 09 presentations from individuals, CSOs as well as businesses. In which, in order to provide an overview of CSOs' views on forest governance, Mr. Nguyen Phu Hung - Deputy Director of SRD Center, EVFTA Project Manager gave a speech "Forest governance in Vietnam - Updated from the perspective of civil society organizations through researches conducted by SRD”. Through the presentation, he emphasized the roles of SOs in forest governance. At the same time, recommendations on transparency in forestry as well as benefit-sharing mechanisms in the context of VPA/FLEGT and REDD + are also presented by him based on the researches of the Centre.

 

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        In addition, the participants also shared their reports, researches, and initiatives on important topics such as Forest Governance Monitoring System - V4MF Project; risk of importing timber - 10 countries exporting the most to Vietnam; HAWA DDS Platform Version 1.0; the importance of the EVFTA Agreement for forest governance and how CSOs can participate; assessing the need for capacity building for members of the VNGO-FLEGT network and related CSOs on monitoring EVFTA implementation. The above comments and presentations came from both national and international stakeholders.

 

      The third multi-stakeholder forum on "Sustainable Forest Governance and Timber Trade Monitoring" is the continuation event of the first forum with the theme "Civil Society Organization and Forest Governance Monitoring" in January 2018 and the Second Forum titled "Mechanisms for Civil Social Organizations to Participate in Monitoring the Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (VPA/FLEGT) Voluntary Partnership Agreement" in January 2019.

 

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Please access here for the Forum’s materials.

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