FAO’s Technical Cooperation Project on “Community Based Forest Harvesting in Vietnam” is aimed to document, identify and disseminate guidelines for sustainable models and methods of community-based forest harvesting. The project has been formulated based on the understanding that sustainable harvesting is a key component of sustainable forest management (SFM), which has the potential for bringing crucially important economic contributions to forest managers, not least when the forest management is at the community level.
In the context of Vietnam, community forest management (CFM) formally takes place in at least 64 communities spanning over 38 communes in ten provinces. Many other communities also engage in forest management collectively, but informally, without official tenurial instruments (so-called “redbooks”). Regardless of the tenure status, the current lack of legal procedures and guidelines for forest timber harvesting which are scale and capacity-appropriate for CFM proponents impede and discourage SFM among CFM proponents. Clear and feasible guidelines are considered part of the fundamental enabling factors to transform unsustainable forestry practices resulting in deforestation or forest degradation into SFM.