Saving Species project launched in Viet Nam
Hanoi, Viet Nam, May 2018—Today, the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) officially launched the USAID Saving Species project this month.
U.S. Ambassador Daniel J. Kritenbrink, Permanent Deputy Minister of MARD Dr. Ha Cong Tuan, representatives of the MARD Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species Management Authority of Viet Nam, and other government and NGO stakeholders attended the launch. TRAFFIC will be working on the project as the technical lead on demand reduction.
“USAID Saving Species is not just a commitment between the US. and Vietnamese governments, it will also link to the efforts of other organisations, within Viet Nam and beyond, who are committed to combatting wildlife trafficking. Only by working together can we solve this global issue,” said Ambassador Kritenbrink.
With a budget of approximately USD10 million, USAID Saving Species supports the Government of Vietnam to combat wildlife trafficking through three integrated and mutually reinforcing objectives: harmonising and improving the legal framework for addressing wildlife crime; strengthening and improving law enforcement and prosecution of wildlife crime; and reducing consumer demand for illegal wildlife products.
"We were excited to see the number and high level of attendees at the launch, which showed the increasing interest in combatting wildlife trafficking in Viet Nam. And this project will do just that. With the commitment of the government and the strength of the Saving Species partnership, we will explore innovative new solutions to the crisis facing species today from overexploitation," said Sarah Ferguson, Head of TRAFFIC's Viet Nam office.
The project’s focal species are rhinos, elephants, and pangolins, and targeted geographic locations include major cities such as Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, and Da Nang, as well as transit points for the illegal trade, such as border crossings, ports, and airports.