Get to grips with FLEGT (April 2015)

News Highlights

Survey launched to assess capacity training needs of SMEs
(flegt-tools) –
In order to assess the awareness and capacity needs of the small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) in the timber industry to implement procedures related to timber legality, NEPCon and SFMI have developed the SMEs survey that is now also available online at

Timber and timber product export turnover fell sharply during first quarterly of 2015
(baodientu.chinhphu) – The timber and timber product export turnover fell more than 6% during the first quarter of 2015, compared to the same period last year due to the changes in the exchange rate and the market requirements on the proof of legal origin of timber. In 2014, Vietnam’s timber industry used 2 million m3 of rubber wood and 1 million m3 of scattered garden trees in the country. Timber enterprises, however, are encountering difficulties of proving the legality of these types of wood in order to export to overseas markets. The Vietnam Timber and Forest Product Association (Vifores) therefore, has proposed Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) to issue a Circular guiding the legality verification of these types of wood. Minister Cao Duc Phat asked Vietnam Directorate of Forestry to quickly complete the draft, by latest 30 June 2015, and propose to MARD in order to issue a Circular on the legality of rubber wood and garden trees in Vietnam.

Planning workshop of the FLEGT Project in the centre of Vietnam
(kiemlamthuathienhue) – During 18-19 March 2015, the FLEGT Project in the centre of Vietnam, in collaboration with the Centre for Rural Development in Central Vietnam (CRD) organised the planning workshop for its second implementation year. 40 representatives from the donor community including the European Union (EU) and ICCO, organisations implementing other FLEGT projects in Vietnam, the Vietnamese Non-government Organisation Network on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (VNGO-FLEGT), NGOs, community, timber processing enterprises and forestry officials as well as local government agencies from four project implemented provinces, attended the event. The workshop also presented updates from other FLEGT projects in Vietnam as well as the updates on FLEGT VPA negotiation between the EU and Government of Vietnam.

When should project forest be harvested?
(Bao Quang Nam) – The Forest Restoration and Sustainable Management Project (KFW60), funded by the German Government has ended after 10 years of implementation (2005-2014) in the provinces of Quang Nam, Quang Ngai, Binh Dinh and Phu Yen, delivering positive impacts on local livelihood improvement and forest protection. There are, however, current questions being raised regarding the post-management plan, harvesting time, and benefit distribution system… at this ending stage of the project.

Enterprises should find alternative raw material sources for timber products
(Bao Lam Dong) – Since the Prime Minister’s decision on harvesting ban in natural forests, timber processing enterprises are facing difficulties in sourcing the timber materials for their production. Lam Dong Province has a potential as a pine wood source. Products from pine wood are popular goods in international markets. However, there has not been any certifications, such as on sustainable forest management, which are the requirements for exporting wood products, in Lam Dong yet. Therefore, the Province has not been able to internationally promote its pine wood. In addition, the local timber processing enterprises still have limited capacity and have not been able to respond to the clients’ orders.

Updates on FLEGT VPA negotiation between EU and the Government of Vietnam
(Dien dan Doanh nghiep) – After the fourth high-level negotiation in October 2014, the Government of Vietnam and EU have come to agreement on 7 of 9 annexes of the VPA. During the two years of 2013 and 2014, the Government of Vietnam has been issuing new forestry legal documents, and currently Vietnam is conducting a review and adjustment of all criteria, indicators, definition and proof of legal timber according to the new laws which are effective as at 31 March 2015. It is expected that by the end of the year there will be two sessions of high-level negotiation, in Hanoi (5th meeting) and in Brussels (6th meeting), Belgium. In addition, three technical meetings on 14-15 April 2015 in Hanoi (9th), in July 2015 (10th) and before (11th) the end of the negotiation. Based on these discussions, the two sides will try to resolve issues in order to complete the negotiations by the end of 2015.


March 2015: Policy brief on Protection Forest Zoning by Sustainable Rural Development Centre (SRD) and the Centre for People and Forests (RECOFTC), with support from the EU and the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO). The publication can be downloaded at

March 2015: Research report on “The Ability of Households Engaged in Timber Growing, Harvesting, Trading, Transporting and Processing to Meet VPA Requirements on Timber Legality” by VNGO-FLEGT with the support from Forest Trends. The report can be downloaded at,%20buying,%20transportation%20and%20processing%20to%20meet%20requirements%20on%20timber%20legality.pdf

March 2015: Livelihood Impact Assessment Manual by SRD and VNGO-FLEGT, with the support from EU, Forest Trends and FERN. The manual can be downloaded at

March 2015: Research report on “Livelihood Impact Assessment of Vietnam’s Proposed Voluntary Partnership Agreement” by VNGO-FLEGT with the support from Forest Trends. The report can be downloaded at

March 2015: Website by Forest Trends’ Ecosystem Marketplace in collaboration with CDP and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), to allow users to track the actions companies are reporting against their commitments, focusing on the big drivers of deforestation stemming from commercial agriculture: palm oil, timber and pulp, soy and beef.

April 2015: Handbook on Promoting Community Participation in Forest Protection and Management by the People and Nature Reconciliation (PanNature). The publication can be downloaded at


14-15 April 2015: 9th Technical Meeting between EU and Government of Vietnam on FLEGT VPA in Ha Noi

21-22 April 2015: Training course on Monitoring & Evaluation for Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and Community-based Forest Committees (CBFCs) by WWF and PanNature, under the EU-funded “Common Access to VPA Process in Laos and Vietnam”, in Thua Thien Hue Province. For more information, contact 


18 June 2015: Online Training Course for Individual Auditor by PEFC. For further information, visit