Workshop Identifies Issues and Opportunities as Vietnam Seeks to Meet Growing International Demand for Legal Wood Products
On October 8-9, 2009, 30 officials from the international cooperation, wood processing, forest protection, and management and planning departments of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), the customs department of the Ministry of Finance, and the Environmental Police of the Ministry of Public Security, together with representatives from the US Embassy, companies, business associations and NGOs, met in Nam Dinh to discuss the challenges Vietnam’s wooden furniture exporters face in complying with new laws seeking to keep wood products made from illegal timber out of major international markets.
The Nam Dinh workshop was co-organized by IUCN, MARD, and the Vietnam Timber and Forest Product Association (VIFORES), which represents 151 timber and wood processing companies. It was the third in a series of meetings convened by IUCN over the past 18 months as part of a multi-stakeholder process, involving government, business, and civil society, to help Vietnam understand and respond to new market requirements. The workshop targeted government officials responsible for supporting industry efforts to comply with these requirements and thereby ensure continued access to major export markets.
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