Another major step forward in ENV’s efforts to protect pangolins
The Forest Protection Department (FPD) of Tay Ninh province have just announced that they will stop issuing legal papers for the farming of pangolins for commercial purposes, ending future pangolin farming in the province.
Pangolin found in closure at a wildlife farm in Tay Ninh
More than a year ago, ENV investigated three wildlife farms in Tay Ninh province after receiving a confirmation that these farms had been permitted to farm pangolins for commercial purposes. During our investigations, ENV were able to collect evidence indicating that owners of these farms used their legal cover to legalize pangolins and other wildlife that came from illegal sources (hunted from the wild). Upon the completion of the investigations, ENV took a series of actions including sending multiple correspondences to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the provincial People’s Committees and FPD, in which ENV reported the problem and requested relevant authorities to withdraw the permits for these farms, and stop licensing commercial farming of pangolins in Vietnam. ENV policy and legislation team also spent countless hours via the phone with the provincial FPD, and encouraged them to follow our recommendations. Sadly, they still ignored our requests, and implied that they were not at fault in issuing the permits to farm pangolins, and that they did not break the law since the permits were issued before the new law became effective, in which the legal protection status of both pangolin species native to Vietnam has been increased.
Due to the lack of cooperation from authorities, ENV decided to launch a media campaign, and publicly requested Tay Ninh authorities to follow our recommendations. As a result, Tay Ninh authorities publicly stated that they will stop issuing permits for farming of pangolins in the future, and that those farms no longer have pangolins. ENV is pleased by this outcome which we believe has set a precedent for other provinces across the country.
This week, ENV will launch a campaign on farming and trade of endangered species, including a workshop and a press conference. As a part of the campaign, on July 26, the workshop involves a variety of stakeholders and creates an open discussion about commercial farming and trade as a launch for the campaign. Frank and open discussion amongst attendees is expected to help reach the conclusion that commercial farming and trade of endangered species should be banned in Vietnam.
Following the farming workshop, on July 27, ENV will continue to hold a press conference at the same venue to officially express ENV’s opinion on commercial farming and trade of endangered species in Vietnam to the media and urge Vietnamese government about a comprehensive law to ban these two activities and clearly defines the classification of different type of facilities that are allowed to farm wildlife in Vietnam as well as punishments if they violate the laws.