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Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade

(FLEGT)


In 2016 Vietnam’s wood and wood product exports to the EU equaled nearly USD 736 million. Forests are important ecosystems that contribute to Vietnam’s economy, and provide jobs and livelihoods: FLEGT will help to ensure that this resource will be used in an environmentally sustainable manner.

 

Vietnam is not only a timber producing country but also a significant country in the processing of timber products. Although there are numerous laws, regulations, and policies regulating the timber supply chain, there have still been numerous challenges with enforcement. As a result, Vietnam has participated in the Forest Law Enforcement Governance and Trade (FLEGT) process.

 

FLEGT was initiated by the EU in order to strengthen the regulation of the timber market, and has the long-term aim of improving forest governance. FLEGT has allowed Vietnam to strengthen its law enforcement and to reduce illegal logging.

 

The Voluntary Partnership Agreement on FLEGT (VPA/FLEGT) also provides an open space for CSOs, such as SRD, to participate.

 

At SRD, we understand that forests are important ecosystems that are essential for maintaining biodiversity and mitigating climate change in Vietnam, whilst also providing for people's livelihoods and the economy. We also believe that local knowledge and participation is essential for sustainable solutions. Our participation in the FLEGT process will bring the voices of communities to the attention of policy makers, and our projects further strive to ensure positive impacts of the VPA, and mitigate any potential negative impacts.

 

1. Promoting good governance in the forest sector

 

Overall goal: To improve forest management by strengthening community tenure rights and improving forest governance - specifically within the framework of the EU FLEGT process - through legal, institutional, and policy reform.

 

Activities:

o Community consultation on legality definitions

o Awareness raising on VPA/FLEGT

o Conduct livelihood impact assessment (LIA) to assess the potential impact of VPA on the livelihoods of vulnerable groups 

 

2. Promoting FLEGT in Southeast Asia through proactive CSO engagement

 

Overall goal: Voluntary Partnership Agreement will lead to improved livelihood, forest governance and respect for tenure rights of forest dependent communities by providing space for CSO in the negotiation and implementation processes.

 

Activities:

o Capacity building for VNGO-FLEGT network member

o Conduct action research on the compliance of households to the timber legality requirements

o Write policy brief to inform VPA negotiators

o Develop case studies on the linkage between FLEGT and REDD+

 

3. CSO monitoring the impact of VPA in the context of FLEGT and REDD+

 

Overall goal: Consolidate CSO approach for monitoring the impacts of reinforced forest law enforcement and agreed VPA mechanisms, on forest governance and livelihoods of smallholders, forest dependent communities & small enterprises.

 

Activities:

o Develop methodologies and tools to monitor the likely impact of VPA to households and micro, small enterprises

o Baseline assessment

o Coordinate the VNGO-FLEGT network to provide comment/ consultation to the REDD+ and FLEGT related program and regulations

o Organise forest governance monitoring forum

We focus on addressing environmental issues, while always including the participation of the communities we work with:

 

o       Networking for collective voices       

 

o       Evidence based advocacy through action research

 

o       Independent monitoring

 

 Below are stats to show the impact of our work with FLEGT:

 

o        40 staff from various CSOs trained on REDD+

 

o        30 representatives of households who plant forests, exploit or process timber assessed the impacts of the VPA on timber production

 

o        12 representatives of CSOs trained on Terra-i technology and joined a trail project on monitoring forest developments in real time 

 

o        10 technical workshops received SRD comments and input regarding forest protection and development law

 

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