Safeguard B Detail

Content with Safeguard B B1 times .


In Viet Nam, access to information is defined as the reading, watching, listening, reproduction and photocopying of information, including details and data that are contained in existing documents and papers and stored in any forms such as writings, printouts, electronic texts, pictures, photos, drawings, tapes, disks, video recordings, audio recordings or in other forms produced by state agencies[1]. Information is to be freely accessible to citizens, except for information that is explicitly characterised as inaccessible or subjected to certain conditions[2]. Access to information includes both the disclosure of information to the general public as well as the provision of information upon request[3].

The right to access to information is recognised in Viet Nam's Constitution (2013)[4] and in the Law on Access to Information (2016)[5] as well as related documents including Government Decree No. 13/2018/ND-CP regulating detailed provisions and measures for implementation of the Law on Access to Information (2016) (Article 2).  People may freely access information which is disclosed publicly or may request access to most information through submission of a form[6]. State agencies responsible for information provision of information are provided with instructions on the updating and disclosure of information for which they are responsible[7]. Guidance is also provided on how agencies should provide information following a request[8]. Some information is explicitly characterised as inaccessible or subjected to certain conditions[9]. Assurances of publicity and transparency with regard to information provision are also provided in the Anti-Corruption Law (2005). If access to information is refused, citizens have a right to complain according to the provisions of the Law on Complaints (2011)[10].

The Ministry of Information and Communications is responsible for providing technical guidelines on the implementation of the Law on Access to Information (2016). The Ministry of Justice is responsible for monitoring overall implementation. The Government Inspectorate is responsible to carry out overall State management of settlement of complaints under the Law on Complaints (2011) throughout the country. The Supreme People's Court, the Supreme People's Procuracy, the State Audit Office, the Office of the National Assembly, the State President's Office and other State agencies, as well as equivalent local bodies within their localities, manage the settlement of complaints within the scope of their functions, tasks and powers. The Viet Nam Fatherland Front and its member organisations supervise the observance of the legislation on complaints according to the provisions of the Law.

 

[1] The Law on Access to Information (2016), Article 2 (1,3).

[2] The Law on Access to Information (2016), Articles 5, 6 & 7.

[3] The Law on Access to Information (2016), Chapter II (disclosure of information) and Chapter III (provision of information upon request).

[4] The Constitution of Viet Nam (2013), Article 25.

[5] The Law on Access to Information (2016).

[6] The Law on Access to Information (2016), Articles 10, 18 & 23.

[7] The Law on Access to Information (2016), Articles 9 & 34.

[8] The Law on Access to Information (2016), Articles 29 & 30.

[9] The Law on Access to Information (2016), Article 6.

[10] The Law on Complaints (2011), Articles 14 & 15


The National REDD+ Programme sets out that the Ministry of Information and Communications will lead and coordinate with the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development in working with the media on to raise awareness and responsibilities in REDD+ implementation among relevant agencies, organisations and people[1]. The section on Safeguard D includes information on consultation and participation mechanisms for REDD+.

A number of information sharing mechanisms and channels have been established to date to support Viet Nam's National REDD+ Programme:

  • A national REDD+ website, which provides information to the public on REDD+ in Viet Nam, maintained by the State Steering Committee Office for the Target Programme on Sustainable Forest Development for 2016-2020 and REDD+ Implementation.
  • A REDD+ Information Portal[CH1] , which provides information to the public on progress of REDD+ implementation, including spatially-explicit information on REDD+ planning and forest cover changes based on national Measurement, Reporting and Verification (MRV) data. The portal is also part of the FORMIS Platform, the Government’s information system for the forestry sector.
  • A Viet Nam REDD+ Database[CH2] , which provides information to authorised users on donor-supported REDD+ projects and initiatives. 
  • The REDD+ Network, including technical working groups and an open listserve including national and local, as well as government and non-government, members.
  • Regular newsletters of REDD+ highlights.

 

[1] NRAP 2017, Decision No 419/QD-TTg dated 5/4/2017.

 


The following section presents information on national-level information sharing relevant to REDD+. This includes information on the implementation of relevant policies, laws and regulations, as well as figures specific to REDD+ information-sharing mechanisms.


The national guidelines on the development of Provincial REDD+ Action Plans[1] assigns responsibilities for information sharing and communications on REDD+. Provincial Departments of Agriculture and Rural Development and Provincial People's Committees are instructed to conduct communication and education activities to raise awareness of related stakeholders, along with other departments responsible for communication, awareness raising and capacity building activities on gender equality, mobilisation of ethnic minorities in REDD+ activities, and REDD+ mainstreaming in programmes and projects for ethnic minorities who live in and near forests.

Under the Emission Reductions Program of the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) Carbon Fund (covering six provinces in the North-Central Coast Region of Viet Nam), activities on communications are aimed at 'timely published information on ER program to stakeholders' and 'documented and shared lessons learnt and results of the ER program'[2]. The ER Program adopts an Adaptive Collaborative Management Approach (ACMA), to be operationalised through proposed local Forest Management Councils (FMCs). FMC's are to implement a range of tasks, including: establish communication networks, to facilitate the exchange of information for all stakeholders to access[3].

 

[1] Chapter 2, part V, MARD Decision No. 5414/2015/QD-BNN-TCLN.

Vietnamese: 

http://vietnam-redd.org/Upload/Download/File/5414_QĐ-BNNTCLN_PRAP_guidelines_5755.pdf;

English: 

http://vietnam-redd.org/Upload/CMS/Content/Library-GovernmentDocuments/Decision%205414.PRAPguidelines.EN.pdf

[2] Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) Carbon Fund. Emission Reductions Program Document (ER-PD). Date of Submission: 5 January 2018

[3] Emission Reductions Program Document (ER-PD). Annex 8: Adaptive Collaborative Management Approach (ACMA) and Benefit Sharing Mechanism (BSM). Date of Submission: 5 January 2018.


The following section presents information on provincial-level information sharing relevant to REDD+. This includes figures specific to the operation of REDD+ information-sharing mechanisms in the provinces.


In Vietnamese law, accountability can be understood as “the provision of information by state agencies about the performance of their assigned duties and powers and responsibilities”[1]. More broadly, accountability relates to the transparency of the activities of public agencies, organisations and units, with the aim of ensuring a democratic approach to state management, recognising that society has a supervisory role to play[2]. In the case of the forest sector, Viet Nam has created dedicated institutions with competence for promoting transparency of the forest sector activities, which include supervision and monitoring of funds. Furthermore, forest budgets are to be scrutinised by a parliamentary and governmental process, and information about the forest agencies budget should be made publicly available. Accountability is also linked to the adoption and implementation of policies, laws and regulations to tackle corruption and possible misuse of funds.

The Anti-Corruption Law (2005) and Law No.27/2012/QH13 amending and supplementing the Anti-Corruption Law define corruption and corrupt acts, mandate the development of codes of conduct for public servants and place an obligation on public officials of a certain rank to declare their assets, and state that all public servants are expected to report acts of corruption where witnessed[3]. In addition, public procurement of goods and services needs to be transparent, and the order and procedures granting land use right certificates must be publicised[4]. Public scrutiny of draft socio-economic development plans, budgets and land-use planning decisions are also addressed in these law[5]. Where State Agencies have the authority to consider and approve projects and state budgets, explanations or justifications must be provided, and budgets must be audited[6]. If these are not satisfactory, complaints can be lodged with their superiors[7]. Denunciations can also be made by the public[8]. Government agencies are also required to report annually on corruption prevention activities undertaken within their respective jurisdictions[9].

The Central Steering Committee against Corruption has national responsibility for directing, coordinating, inspecting and promoting anti-corruption efforts. The National Assembly and its Standing Committee supervise anti-corruption efforts in the domains that fall within their jurisdiction. People’s inspection boards at all levels supervise anti-corruption efforts in their respective localities. The Government Inspectorate, ministerial inspectorate, provincial inspectorates, provincial Services' inspectorates, and district inspectorates direct the inspection of the observation of legal anti-corruption provisions. Where such observation reveals corrupt acts, it shall request the designated government agencies to investigate and handle them. The State Audit is responsible for organising the audit function both to prevent and to detect corrupt activities in government operations and administration. The Supreme People’s Procuracy is mandated to organise and direct the prosecution of corruption-related crimes and to control the related investigation, prosecution and enforcement of judgment in corruption-related crimes. Provincial Peoples Committees are responsible to deal with denunciations within their localities.

 

[1] Government Decree No. 90/2013/ND-CP, Article 3(1).

[2] Nguyen Tuan Khanh ‘Improving the legal bases for accountability’, http://noichinh.vn/nghien-cuu-trao-doi/201309/hoan-thien-co-so-phap-ly-ve-trach-nhiem-giai-trinh-292197, 18 November 2013

[3] The Anti-Corruption Law (2005), Articles 1, 3, 36, 38 & 45.

[4] The Anti-Corruption Law (2005), Articles 13 & 21.

[5] The Anti-Corruption Law (2005), Articles 15 & 21.

[6] The Anti-Corruption Law (2005), Articles 20 & 28.

[7] The Anti-Corruption Law (2005), Article 72.

[8] The Anti-Corruption Law (2005), Article 84.

[9] The Anti-Corruption Law (2005), Article 33.


A number of risks related to accountability and corruption control have been identified through REDD+ planning processes at the national and subnational levels. A 2017 assessment of potential benefits and risks arising from National REDD+ Programme[1] policies and measures identified risks in this area focused on the potential for 'elite capture' of REDD+ processes and/or benefits. For example, such risks may include:

  • A lack of transparency and manipulation of consultations processes for environmental impact assessment/strategic environmental assessments;
  • Financial mechanisms (such as business incubators) may better serve the interests of the private sector at the expense of smallholders; and
  • Elite capture of business models and associated benefits for managing and conserving natural forests.

The assessment at the national level also put forward a number of suggested measures for addressing the identified risks related to accountability/corruption control, especially elite capture, including:

  • To ensure inclusive, participatory and transparent consultation processes, clear guidelines should be elaborated covering selection of representatives, inclusiveness, information sharing/disclosure, consent processes, and so on. .
  • Clear policies, principles, standard operating procedures and guidelines for financial mechanisms (including the proposed business incubator) and business models should be developed, in order to enhance social co-benefits and address social risks;  attention should focus on developing and operationalising safeguards to protect rural communities and smallholders involved in producing key commodities.
  • Forest land allocation procedures should be clarified and properly implemented to address issues of inequity and inequality, and to enhance positive social impacts.
  • There should be capacity-building for public sector implementation agencies (e.g. Forest Management Boards, extension agencies) on safeguards measures and procedures.

In addition, Grievance Redress Mechanisms (GRMs) relevant to REDD+ in Viet Nam are expected to address complaints and disputes related to issues of accountability, corruption and elite capture (see Safeguard B2). The processes in place to ensure the transparency and fairness of benefit sharing are also covered under Safeguard B2.

At the sub-national level, analysis of social and environmental risks and benefits is also required for the development of Provincial REDD+ Action Plans (PRAPs)[2]. In specific sub-national locations, assessments have also been carried out through the Strategic Environmental and Social Assessment (SESA) during the development of the FCPF Emission Reductions Program (ER Program)  in the North-Central Coast Region of Viet Nam, and through the assessment of Environmental and Social Considerations for the Project for Sustainable Forest Management in the Northwest Watershed Area (SUSFORM-NOW) funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).The ER Program’s SESA and ESMF, for example, identifies a number of risks related to 'elite capture', for example of REDD+ benefits and access to forest resources[3].

 

[1] NRAP 2017, Decision No 419/QD-TTg dated 5/4/2017.

[2] Chapter 3, MARD Decision No. 5414/2015/QD-BNN-TCLN.

[3] Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF) Carbon Fund. Emission Reductions Program Document (ER-PD). Date of Submission: 5 January 2018


As described under Safeguard B1.3.1, Viet Nam has created dedicated institutions with competence for promoting transparency of the forest sector activities, which include supervision and monitoring of funds. Forest budgets are to be scrutinised by a parliamentary and governmental process, and information about the forest agencies budget should be made publicly available. Public scrutiny of draft socio-economic development plans, budgets and land-use planning decisions are also addressed in the Anti-Corruption Law[1]. Where State Agencies have the authority to consider and approve projects and state budgets, explanations/justifications must be provided, and budgets must be audited[2].

In the National REDD+ Programme (NRAP, 2017)[3], it is stated that the transparency of financial resources and organisations for the implementation of REDD+ programme must be assured to enable the participation of related stakeholders, including government bodies, socio-political organisations, non-governmental organisations and international parties as relevant.

Viet Nam's NRAP[3] outlines the expected sources and amounts of funds to support REDD+ implementation during 2017-2020. The identified sources of funds include:

a) Domestic resources:

  • State budget allocated for relevant Target Programmes on: sustainable forest development; responding to climate change and green growth; education, vocational training and occupational safety; agricultural economic restructuring; natural disasters prevention and mitigation; residential life stability; and other national programmes and projects in the period 2016-2020.
  • Investments by enterprises and other economic actors through various market mechanisms; proceeds from offset forest plantation policies and contributions other related programmes, projects and individuals.
  • Loans and credits (including commercial loans and investment for development).

b) International resource contributions, development assistance and trust funds of other countries, international organisations, non-governmental organisations, businesses and individuals and other financial institutions; revenues received from REDD+ performance, including revenues from forest carbon credit trading schemes.

c) Other legal sources:

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and the Ministry of Finance are called upon to establish Viet Nam’s National REDD+ Fund, and to issue regulations on the organisation and operation of the Fund in accordance with Viet Nam’s laws and international regulations and practices. The Ministry of Planning and Investment is also charged with coordinating with the Ministry of Finance to allocate counterpart funds for the projects implementing the NRAP[3].

 

[1] The Anti-Corruption Law (2005), Articles 15 & 21.

[2] The Anti-Corruption Law (2005), Articles 20 & 28.

[3] NRAP 2017, Decision No 419/QD-TTg dated 5/4/2017