Vietnam Forest & Trade Network Welcomes Two New Members | WWF

Vietnam Forest & Trade Network Welcomes Two New Members

Posted on 26 February 2008
Members signing participation agreement
© WWF Vietnam

Hanoi – On Tuesday evening, 26 February 2008, the Vietnam Forest and Trade Network (VFTN) announced two new members in an official ceremony. The new members are Nestco Ltd., a timber trading company, and the Tran Duc Group, a wood-processing manufacturer.

Contribution to transform the global market place into a force for saving valuable and threatened forests in Vietnam, and in countries where timber is sourced for production in Vietnam, by providing economic and social benefits for the businesses and people that depend on those forests is the mission of VFTN, the Vietnamese chapter of the Global Forest and Trade Network (GFTN). Since 2005, the VFTN, which was founded under the framework set up by WWF Greater Mekong’s Vietnam programme, has worked to reach this mission.

With its mission, VFTN aims to achieve its goal to mainstream responsible forest management and trade as the standard practice in Vietnam’s forest products industry.

In partnership with 30 other GFTN country members worldwide, in which about 400 timber trading and processing companies are operating, VFTN offers its members the opportunity to access a vast market of similarly minded businesses.

“We are here to work with companies to meet Forest Certification Standards whilst providing these companies with access to buyers of their certified products” said VFTN Coordinator Dr. Le Khac Coi. “Vietnam’s timber processing sector is rapidly expanding but hardly depends on timber material importation. We are pleased to keep them informed of the legal sources of timber from substainably managed forests from all over the world.” he added.

“On one hand, Vietnam’s recent accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO) represents opportunities as well as challenges for local enterprises including ours. VFTN provides a credible partnership in a more and more competitive business world. On the other hand, our demanding clients are interested in both the quality and the source of products. VFTN’s certification will serve as a valid and reliable support for our trading.” Nestco’s Director Nguyen Duc Minh expressed.

In order to qualify for VFTN membership, all of the successeful companies have undergone baseline audits and prepared detailed time-bound action plans to improve their environmental performance. VFTN will provide technical support and guidance to help these companies follow through on these action plans and achieve certification within a five-year period.

Tran Duc Group CEO, Tran Duc Lam, said “VFTN membership is quite promising, (especially) knowing that annual sales of Truong Thanh Furniture Corporation - a VFTN member - have increased substantially in recent years. In addition, VFTN is also a forum to share and learn environmental success stories and thus motivates wider commitment to the standards we have embraced.”

To date, VFTN has 7 participants, including 6 timber processors/traders and 1 forest member with an annual turnover of about USD 200 million. It is expected that the number of participants will increase to at least 30 by 2012. 

For further information, please contact
Nguyen Anh Thu
Communications Officer
WWF Vietnam
39 Xuan Dieu Rd, Tay Ho dist., Hanoi
Tel. 84-4-719 30 49, ext.136
Fax. 84-4-719 30 48

Editors notes:

Major VFTN services include:
• Guidance with the development and implementation of purchasing policies;
• Information and guidance for attaining chain of custody certification
• Information and guidance for attaining forest certification through stepwise approach;
• Links to verified legal and credibly certified producers and those progressing to certification;
• Information on non-traditional or lesser-known wood species and sources;
• Guidance in assessing the value and credibility of different certification systems.

Members signing participation agreement
© WWF Vietnam Enlarge