The context of REDD+ in Vietnam: Drivers, agents and institutions
As a country likely to be seriously affected by climate change, Vietnam has engaged deeply in international discussions and preparations to implement REDD+. Vietnam has been selected as one of the first countries to pilot the United Nations REDD (UN-REDD) programme and practise Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC). Vietnam is at the end of the forest transition curve, from high rates of deforestation to regrowth of a stable and expanding forest cover, as correlated to economic development. This means that the country’s forest cover is increasing, but with declining forest quality. This raises questions as to whether Vietnam will be able to benefit from REDD+ and carbon market in the long run. In contrast to other countries, in Vietnam REDD+ is seen as a potential source of income that can contribute both to the national payments for environmental services (PES) programme and to the national poverty reduction strategy. As part of the Global Comparative Study (GSC) on REDD+, a project carried out by CIFOR with financial support from Norad, this report aims to discuss the political, economic and social opportunities and constraints that will affect the design and implementation of REDD+ in Vietnam. The report begins by identifying the drivers of deforestation and degradation in Vietnam, and then analyses aspects of the social, political and institutional context that might constrain or support the design and implementation of REDD+ in Vietnam. The research suggests that, if REDD+ is to succeed, it must be participatory, transparent and wellmonitored,to ensure that the programme is conducted such that it meets its overarching objectives and guidelines. The success of REDD+ will also depend on it taking a pro-poor and pro-gender equity approach.