Hanoi statement to fight illegal wildlife trade under review

Last update 17:28 | 31/05/2018

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the UK Embassy in Vietnam held a bilateral meeting and announced the one-year review of implementing the Hanoi Statement on Illegal Wildlife Trade in Hanoi on May 31.

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The report was built by the ministry based on the commitments of 25 countries and international organisations at the Hanoi Conference on Illegal Wildlife Trade in 2016.

The UK will host an international conference about illegal wildlife this October.

According to the report, the governments of countries have strengthened bilateral and multilateral cooperation as well as coordinated with international and non-governmental organisations to carry out a number of activities to reduce the demand for wildlife products and eliminate illegal wildlife markets.

Many nations and organisations have adopted drastic measures to realise their commitments such as closing the ivory market in China, raising the maximum punishment 15 years’ imprisonment in Vietnam for wildlife crime, and launching projects to prevent illegal trade of wildlife in the US.

Some countries, territories and international organisations have amended legal documents relating to wildlife crime.

In addition to training activities and legal capacity enhancement, many countries have strengthened technical equipment for law enforcement forces such as customs, police and border guards to intensify inspections at hot spots of wild fauna and flora.

Some nations have sent officials to others to support training and consultancy activities as well as carried out programmes to support local livelihood, forestry protection and development through the assistance of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and the World Bank.

In Vietnam, the disposal of more than two tonnes of elephant tusks, 70kg of rhino horns and some specimens of tiger bone in November 2016 has delivered a strong message of the Vietnamese Government to the struggle against illegal wildlife trade.

Some leading transport businesses in Vietnam have announced not to transport rare wild animals.

Besides increasing awareness for businesses and logistics firms, the Vietnam Administration of Forestry has worked with the Ministry of Education and Training to build a programme educating children about animal protection.

Vietnamese relevant agencies have stepped up international cooperation in the field and prepared all necessary conditions to reach the signing of a judicial assistance agreement.

Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Ha Cong Tuan said with the successful Hanoi Conference on Illegal Wildlife Trade 2016, Vietnam pledged to promote its pioneering role in regional and international efforts to fight illegal trade of fauna and floral species.

UK Ambassador to Vietnam Giles Lever hoped the strategic partnership between Vietnam and the UK will be developed in various fields, including the prevention of illegal wildlife trade.

According to Tuan, Vietnam is improving legal regulations, especially guidance documents to implement the Law on Forestry and Law on Fisheries to create a firm legal foundation for the execution of the Penal Code and specialised laws on natural conservation and protection of wildlife animals.

Apart from raising awareness of the community in protecting wild fauna and flora, Vietnam will forge ahead with international cooperation via implementing Memorandum of Understanding controlling wildlife trade with China, Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia, the Czech Republic and South Africa, looking to sign the mutual legal assistance agreement with Mozambique, he added.

VNA

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