Wildlife trafficking is driving our Earth’s most iconic species towards extinction. Wildlife trafficking also fuels corruption, insecurity, and funds militias and terrorists, jeopardizing local livelihoods and undermining national development strategies. Ending wildlife trafficking is an urgent conservation, security and development priority.
A rapidly growing middle to high income sector across Asia has led to higher demand of wildlife and wildlife products and an increase in poaching and wildlife trafficking.
WCS Viet Nam focuses on enhancing the law enforcement capacity of Vietnamese authorities and improving the legal framework to fight wildlife crimes. We prioritize different key areas of work which can impact all levels of the wildlife illegal trade network in Viet Nam and eventually lead to the arrest and successful prosecution of wildlife criminals.
Create a favorable policy environment: WCS works with the National Assembly, the Ministry of Justice, and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to review and provide recommendations on the legal framework related to wildlife conservation. Recently, our legal system for wildlife management and protection has been improved with the introduction of Resolution 05/2018/ NQ-HDTP, Decree 06/2019 / ND-CP and Decree 35 2019 /ND-CP.
Strengthen law enforcement capacity: WCS Viet Nam cooperates with the Department of Environmental Police, CITES Management Authority, Forest Protection Department, Supreme People's Procuracy, and Supreme People's Court to organize information-sharing workshops and capacity building training, for Vietnamese and foreign agencies and partners in countries such as China, Cambodia, Laos, Indonesia (Asia) and Mozambique, South Africa, Kenya, Tanzania (Africa). In the 2010-2019 period, WCS coordinated 32 on-the-job trainings, with nearly 1,837 trainees.
Promote multilateral cooperation: WCS enhances international cooperation among government agencies via working visits and facilitation of the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). Specifically, on December 3, 2018, under the WCS’s support, a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) on criminal matters was officially signed by Supreme People’s Procuracy (SPP) of Vietnam and Minister of Justice, Constitutional and Religious Affairs of Mozambique in Maputo, Mozambique, significantly contributing to strengthening bilateral cooperation to combat transnational crimes, including wildlife trafficking crimes, between the two countries.
Research and carry out surveillance of zoonotic diseases: Since 2010, WCS Vietnam has joined efforts to detect viruses that may lead to pandemics, especially viruses that can be transmitted between animals and humans. The wildlife health project of WCS Viet Nam has implemented activities in 5 provinces/cities, including Hanoi, Dong Nai, Dong Thap, Bac Giang and Quang Ninh. In the 2014-2019 period, a total of 15,767 samples from 4,712 individuals were collected.
Implement species conservation program: In 2015, WCS Vietnam began to participate in the conservation of critically endangered turtle (Rafetus swinhoei). This species, the historic legend of Hoan Kiem Lake, now has only three known individuals worldwide. In an effort to find more individuals of Hoan Kiem Turtle, WCS has conducted exploration in many natural lakes of Vietnam and recently developed real-time and on-site environmental DNA test kit of Rafetus swinhoei, bringing a new hope for this species. WCS is currently working with Ha Noi Department of Fisheries and the Indo-Myanmar Conservation to implement the Hoan Kiem Turtle Conservation Plan of Hanoi People's Committee for the period of 2018-2020, with a vision to 2030.