Illegal wildlife trafficking is a multinational problem affecting source, transit, and destination countries. Therefore, strengthening government to government cooperation should be prioritized among efforts to combat transnational wildlife trafficking.
Viet Nam is seen not only as a major market for illegal wildlife products but a major transit hub for the movement of these products throughout Asia, particularly to China. A large number of products that enters Viet Nam has been sourced from other countries in Asia or Africa.
WCS Viet Nam focus on establishing and promoting multinational cooperation in order to target all areas of the supply chain. WCS Viet Nam has built well-respected relationships with the Vietnamese government and some foreign governments which enable us to be an effective coordinator of international events and multinational cooperation programs.
Viet Nam - African countries
With strong support from WCS Viet Nam, the delegation of Viet Nam Wildlife Enforcement Network (VN-WEN) had their first visit to four African countries including Kenya, South Africa, Tanzania and Mozambique for a series of meetings and official talks on illegal wildlife trade in May 2015. The trip opened new channels between Viet Nam and these source nations to discuss strategies and improved collaboration to combat wildlife trafficking. The trip also prepared for a multilateral dialogue among Viet Nam, Kenya, Tanzania and Mozambique on strengthening transcontinental wildlife crime prevention in November 2015 where more specific joint actions were discussed openly and thoroughly.
Bilateral meeting between Ministry of Public Security of Viet Nam andthe Department of International Relations of Mozambican Ministry of Interior, March 2017
As a result of our coordination effort, The Governments of Viet Nam and Mozambique agreed to scale up law enforcement partnership to combat transnational wildlife trafficking through signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signing, working on the deployment of a Vietnamese police officer in Mozambique and development of Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) between the two countries. A bilateral MOU between Supreme People’s Procuracy of Viet Nam and Attorney General Office of Mozambique and an MOU on cooperation for wildlife conservation between the two governments were signed in 2017. WCS continue to support the Supreme People’s Procuracy, Ministry of Public Security of Viet Nam and their Mozambican partners to move forward MLAT negotiation process and plan to send Vietnamese police officer to Mozambique for joint actions to combat illegal wildlife trade.
WCS have been facilitating effective, strategic, intelligence-led enforcement between Viet Nam and Mozambique to serve as a model for Asia-Africa cooperation. We focus on generating actionable intelligence on wildlife crime networks operating between African and Asian that can support investigation, prosecution and conviction of wildlife crimes. Key activities include realization of a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT), executing joint actions through deploying a Vietnamese police officer in Mozambique, and implementing Knowledge, Attitude and Practices (KAP) survey towards illegal wildlife trade to design crime prevention strategy for the Vietnamese community living in Mozambique.
Viet Nam - Asian countries
South-east Asia is explicitly facing a full range of challenges of wildlife management. Of which, illegal wildlife poaching and trafficking are considered the biggest threat to the survival of wild fauna and flora in the region. Many countries in this region are the source, transit, and consumer markets; where wildlife is caught and sold for food, traditional medicine, pet, decoration, and trophies.
With technical and financial support from WCS’s country program, government agencies of Viet Nam have been engaged with their respective counter partner agencies in China, Cambodia, Indonesia and Lao PDR through joint activities such as bilateral and trilateral meeting, field trip, and training. WCS not only facilitate the process of signing bilateral cooperation agreements among those governments, more importantly, we attempt to encourage the execution of the documents, turning political commitment into actions. In addition to providing actionable intelligence to enforcement agencies, WCS offer the institutional analysis so that agencies have better information in partnering with suitable bodies in related countries.
Bilateral dialogue on collaboration against illegal wildlife trade between Viet Nam and Indonexia, August 2017