Special Edition: Viet Nam's REDD+ Journey
In 2020, UN-REDD will celebrate 12 years of supporting countries with transformational change in the forestry and land use sectors. This special issue is dedicated to sharing key lessons learned from Viet Nam's REDD+ journey as one of the Programme’s original nine pilot countries.
With the completion of the four Warsaw Framework pillars at the close of its National Programme in 2018 – including the launch of one of the world’s first fully operational online safeguards information systems (SIS), the approval of its National REDD+ Implementation Plan, an operational National Forest Monitoring System (NFMS) and updated Forest Reference Emission Level/Forest Reference Level - Viet Nam is now looking to further operationalise REDD+ on the ground.
Throughout its REDD+ journey, Viet Nam has learned many valuable lessons worth sharing. For instance, from its various pilots and discussions, Viet Nam has learned that the core of a successful REDD+ strategy is effective planning and investment. By developing national and sub-national plans, focused on clearly defined objectives, stakeholders were incentivised towards better forest management. In turn, these lessons on integrated land use planning for provincial REDD+ action plans, private sector and cross-sector collaboration informed the recent development of a deforestation-free jurisdictional approach for the Central Highlands.
Looking back, a lot has changed since Viet Nam started its REDD+ journey in 2009. Initially, a specific division in the forestry administration under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD) managed REDD+. Today, it is managed through a State Steering Committee headed by the Deputy Prime Minister. This demonstrates the elevated political prominence of REDD+, a wide appreciation of the multi-sectoral nature of REDD+, and the relevance of various agencies within and outside MARD.
Viet Nam is now in a position to apply for results-based payments from the Green Climate Fund. The hope is that its formidable journey can inspire other countries looking to move from REDD+ readiness to REDD+ implementation.