USAID promotes chi initiative to drive down demand for rhino horn
Hanoi, Viet Nam, 28th August 2018—Today, the USAID Wildlife Asia project launched the third phase of TRAFFIC’s Chi Initiative, a programme to help decrease consumer demand for rhino horn in Viet Nam.
“The U.S. Government remains committed to collaborating with countries around the world to combat wildlife crime and end demand for illegal wildlife products” said Craig Hart, Acting Mission Director of the U.S. Agency for International Development Mission in Viet Nam.
Demand for rhino horn in Asian countries, including Viet Nam, drives the illegal poaching of rhinos in Africa, putting the species in jeopardy of extinction. The Vietnamese government has made strides in countering wildlife crime, notably with a new penal code that features stricter penalties for the possession and trade of illegal wildlife products. Despite these efforts, Viet Nam is still considered a major consumer market and transit hub for rhino horn.
The “Chi,” or “Strength of Will,” social marketing initiative seeks to reduce demand for rhino horn by using a social behavioural change communication approach to tackle consumption driven by social status. USAID Wildlife Asia’s Chi Phase III will continue to use targeted, evidence-based behavioural change communication solutions to reduce key categories of users’ demand.
“We were excited to welcome representatives from government, civil society, businesspeople and the media at the launch, which showed an increasing consensus for wildlife protection in Viet Nam,” said Sarah Ferguson, head of TRAFFIC in Viet Nam. “As part of USAID Wildlife Asia and with a strong commitment from Vietnamese partners, we will continue to explore innovative behavioural change solutions and work to further reduce illegal wildlife consumption in the country.”
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is responsible for the majority of overseas development assistance from the United States Government and works to end extreme poverty and promote resilient, democratic societies while advancing security and prosperity for America and the world