The project ” Gender Transformative and Responsible Agribusiness Investments in South East Asia (GRAISEA)” implemented by Oxfam Vietnam and the International Collaborating Center for Aquaculture and Fisheries Sustainability (ICAFIS), funded by the European Union SWITCH-Asia Programme, aimed to address the gaps in sustainability reporting in small to medium-sized aquaculture and fisheries industries in Vietnam.
The project ran from November 2016 to March 2017, with GreenHub supporting 6 fish processing enterprises in Bạc Liêu, Sóc Trang, Bến Tre, and An Giang Provinces to develop the first sustainability reports in the industry. The development of sustainability reports demonstrates the commitment of the enterprises to harmonize business objectives and social activities while ensuring environmental protection.
The promotion of corporate social responsibility in the private sector has become an important policy direction towards Vietnam’s sustainable development.
In 2013, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development displayed leadership towards enhancing the sustainable development of the fisheries sector through Decision No. 2760 / QĐ-BNN-TSTS. Since this time, there has been some progress to incorporate sustainable practices into the business activities of seafood production enterprises. The first decree which requires Vietnamese seafood companies listed on the stock exchange to annually disclose information regarding their sustainability practices was announced by the Ministry of Finance in October 2015 (Circular No. 155/2015/TT-BTC).
The implementation of Sustainability Reports is a relatively new concept for Vietnamese enterprises and has been limited to multinational and large-scale enterprises. Sustainability reports are required to disclose information on business performance in environmental aspects, financial performance, and capital management. These reports increase business transparency, make businesses accountable for their practices, increase consumer trust, and promotes the improvement of management systems and operational efficiency.
Vietnam has a strong roadmap to develop a sustainable seafood processing industry by 2020 and it expected that environmental standards, quality, and food hygiene and safety will continue to improve.