Vietnam stands ready to cooperate with foreign countries and international organisations to improve tiger conservation in the country and the region.
Deputy Minister of Natural Resources and Environment Bui Cach Tuyen made this commitment at a historic tiger conservation forum held in Saint Petersburg, Russia, from November 21-24.
He also pledged to fulfil the tasks of the Global Tiger Initiative as a key element for protecting biodiversity.
“Vietnam is committed to full involvement in and stronger support for relevant regional and global programmes,” said the Deputy Minister. He cited the ASEAN-Wildlife Enforcement Network (ASEAN-WEN) website, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and Interpol as evidence of this.
He also pledged full participation in other bilateral and multilateral frameworks on conservation of tigers in particular and biodiversity in general.
The summit, hosted by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, was the first international forum on the conservation of an endangered wildlife species.
The event was attended by high-profile representatives from 13 countries home to wild tigers, namely India, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Russia, Thailand, China and Vietnam. Representatives of UN agencies and foreign NGOs engaged in biodiversity conservation were also present.
At the summit, governments capped off a year-long political process with about US$127 million in new funding to support the Global Tiger Recovery Programme. The funding will include a large loan package from the World Bank for some countries with wild tiger populations and millions in additional grants from the Global Environment Facility.
The World-Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) committed US$50 million over the next five years for tiger conservation and set a goal to increase that to US$85 million.
The Global Tiger Initiative was esstablished by the World Bank President in 2008 for tiger range countries committed to doubling the current wild tiger population of about 3,200 by 2022