12 January 2017
“TRAFFIC is empowering different sectors in Viet Nam to lead the fight against illegal wildlife trade and consumption and this is the first workshop with a prime focus on the hospitality industry,” said Madelon Willemsen, Head of TRAFFIC’s Viet Nam office.
“We know consumer tourism takes place in Viet Nam and hotels and tourism companies are uniquely suited to promote zero-tolerance towards illegal wildlife consumption—they are experts at customer relations and they interact with hundreds of thousands of international and national tourists every year.” “Businesses in the hospitality sector can now join the thousands of other businesses in Viet Nam in the fight against illegal wildlife trade by encouraging their guests to be responsible tourists.”
The workshop focused on the reputational risks businesses face regarding any association with illegal wildlife trade and consumption practices. Participants learned about the latest developments in wildlife trafficking in Viet Nam and world-wide and about the updated penal code in Viet Nam that will come into effect in 2017, under which harsher criminal penalties will be imposed on individuals and businesses implicated in the illegal trade or consumption of wildlife.
Delegates brainstormed ways to mitigate risks and create an action plan to integrate wildlife protection into their policies and practices. CSR was put forward as a key tool to enhance a company’s reputation while reducing the risk of being complicit in wildlife crimes and participants where trained on how CSR can be integrated throughout their business practices.
Nguyen Anh Tuan, Director of ITDR said, “Hospitality enterprises face many potential risks from illegal wildlife consumption. This workshop was a great chance to enhance knowledge and engage hospitality enterprises to adopt zero tolerance towards illegal wildlife consumption. ITDR is committed to sustainable and legal tourist development. After the workshop, we can develop an action plan where ITDR and businesses in the hospitality sector can co-operate and integrate wildlife protection into their CSR policies.”
Story and photos courtesy of TRAFFIC - the willife trade monitoring network
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