USAID and Da Nang Local Government Partner to Reduce Demand for Wildlife Products

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Wildlife Asia project is partnering with the People’s Committee of Da Nang City to place public service announcements (PSAs) against illegal wildlife consumption in thirteen strategic locations around the city and the Da Nang International Airport until August 2020. The strategic placements have an estimated foot traffic of 8.7 million residents and visitors for six months.

The PSAs are part of USAID Wildlife Asia’s Chi Phase III Initiative, a social and behavior change communication campaign to reduce demand for rhino horn and other illegal wildlife products. The initiative targets wealthy Vietnamese businessmen - a key market segment who, based on consumer research conducted by USAID in Vietnam in 2018, consumes illegal wildlife products to display their wealth/social status and/or for their perceived health benefits. The Chi campaign reminds all Vietnamese that success and health come from one’s own life choices rather than from illegal wildlife products. The health messages are especially timely in light of the recent spread of the COVID-19 virus, which scientists believe could well have been transmitted to humans through exposure to illegal wildlife.

“USAID is pleased to be working together with the People’s Committee of Da Nang to strengthen efforts to end illegal wildlife consumption in Da Nang and help protect the health of Vietnamese citizens and the wellbeing of threatened species around the world,” said USAID/Vietnam Mission Director Michael Greene.

The Da Nang City People’s Committee joined the Chi campaign to boost efforts to counter the consumption of illegal wildlife products. Through the Committee’s involvement, eight PSAs are being displayed free of charge at the Da Nang Airport and on LED screens in five locations around the city. The Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) Da Nang, a long-standing Chi Initiative partner helped organize the displays.

“There has never been a more critical time to endorse Chi messages. They remind us of the strength and resilience of our people, which are so important as we collectively fight the COVID-19 pandemic. Our partnership with USAID is a continuing effort to make Da Nang illegal wildlife free, which is critical to the sustainable development of the city,” said Mr. Nguyen Tien Quang, Director of VCCI Da Nang.

Da Nang City was identified by a USAID 2018 consumer research as a consumption hotspot for illegal wildlife products and has been the site of many recent wildlife seizures, including a record-breaking 9.1-ton ivory seizure in March 2019. The Initiative has already had successes in the region. Chi workshops held in 2019 have inspired three managers of local resorts to become champions against illegal wildlife consumption by holding counter wildlife trafficking (CWT) training sessions for their staff and displaying CWT messages in their workplaces.

About USAID Wildlife Asia
The USAID Wildlife Asia project works to address wildlife trafficking as a transnational crime. The project aims to reduce consumer demand for wildlife parts and products, strengthen law enforcement, enhance legal and political commitment, and support regional collaboration to reduce wildlife crime in Southeast Asia, particularly Cambodia, China, Laos, Thailand, and Vietnam. USAID Wildlife Asia focuses on four species: elephant, rhinoceros, tiger and pangolin.

For more information, please contact:

Dorelyn Jose, Communications, Outreach and Learning Specialist
Tran Bao Ngan, Communications Officer