EU projects launched to support forest management in Vietnam

Tuesday, 2014-02-18 18:33:13
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The signing ceremony for the projects
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Nhan Dan Online – Three European Union funded projects in support of Vietnam’s movement to combat illegal logging and promote sustainable use of forests were launched on February 18.

The projects, worth a total of EUR3 million, will support Vietnam over a three year implementation plan in the capacity building of civil society organisations and small and medium-sized enterprises implementing the EU’s action plan for Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) between the EU and Vietnam.

The FLEGT action plan first came into effect in May 2003 and sets out regulations and measures to minimise the risk of illegally harvested timber and timber products reaching EU markets.

Vietnam officially entered into the FLEGT negotiations with the EU in May 2010. To date, three negotiation rounds have taken place. As part of the negotiation process, technical sessions, stakeholder consultations and technical support are being carried out with the aim of concluding negotiations for an EU-Vietnam Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) by the end of 2014.

The VPA between Vietnam and the EU will provide a legal framework and compliance monitoring system aimed at ensuring that all timber imports into the European Union from Vietnam have been legally acquired, harvested, transported and exported. Consequently, this will strengthen the institutional reform process in the forest sector, its law enforcement and enhance the national image and trademark of Vietnam’s timber industry. Therefore, it will ensure that Vietnam timber and timber products can maintain their access to the European Union market while enhancing their access to other markets.

Vietnam recorded export turnover of timber products of U$5.5 billion in 2013, an increase of 15.24% compared to 2012.