In 29 November 2014, VNGO-FLEGT Network organized a Workshop on Reviewing the Network’s activities for the last three year and on approving VNGO-FLEGT strategic development plan for 2015-2025 in Phu Gia Hotel, Hoa Bình city, Vietnam. Participants in the workshop were 25 member organizations and other partners of the Network.
On behalf of the Board of Management, Dr. Truong Quang Hoang delivered the opening remark
Founded in January 2012, VNGO-FLEGT has carried out many capacity building activities for member organizations; research/ assessments; and community consultations in order to facilitate the process of negotiating VPA between Vietnam and the EU. Additionally, VNGO-FLEGT has also carried out many projects; research/ assessments; and conferences/ workshops in association with VNFOREST. VNGO-FLEGT’s contributions were recognized by both VNFOREST and local communities.
At the moment, VNGO-FLEGT has more than 40 member organizations over the country. However, due to its large size and the fact that the Network’s member organizations are scattered across the country, VNGO-FLEGT inevitably faced with a number of difficulties, particularly in term of the co-operation between member organizations. During the workshop, the delegates commented on the activity report and the strategic plan for 2015-2025. Being aware on the current difficulties, the delegates contributed many helpful ideas on how to improve the effectiveness; members’ ownership of and active participation in the Network. One initiative which was introduced in the strategic development plan and accepted by all member organizations was the establishment of a Network’s budget, starting from 2015. At the moment this budget is funded by annual membership fees; however in the near future, it may include additional incomes from other initiatives.
Formulating the Network’s enlargement plan was another key activity of the workshop. The delegates were asked to name current and prospective areas/provinces where member organizations of VNGO-FLEGT can carry out projects related to FLEGT. When it will be completed, this list will be an important guideline for the strategic development of the Network in the period of 2015-2025.
Towards the end of the workshop, the Network’s Board of Management for 2015-2017 election was conducted. According to the result, the Network’s Board of Management for 2015-2017 will include: Centre for Sustainable Rural Development (SRD) (Chairperson); along with the Consultative and Research Center on Natural Resource Management (CORENARM) and Research Institute for Sustainable Forest Management and Forest Certification (SFMI).The workshop ended successfully, marking the beginning of a new period in the development of VNGO-FLEGT. Although the VPA negotiation process between Vietnam and the EU still faces many formidable obstacles; but with a far-sighted strategic plan, a highly competent and enthusiastic Board of Management and the active participation of member organizations, it is expected that VNGO-FLEGT will continue to succeed and will make significant contribution to the process of negotiating and implementing VPA-FLEGT in Vietnam.