Economics of conservation for the Hon Mun Marine Protected Area in Vietnam

Book Chapter

Nam Pham Khanh, Pieter J. H. van Beukering

Marine and coastal resources in Vietnam are under increasing threat from human activities (Burke et al. 2002). One way to manage these threats is through Marine Protected Areas (MPAs), which safeguard valuable ecosystems within their confines. Despite the ecological and socio-economic benefits they provide (Whittingham et al. 2003), the management of MPAs is often severely constrained by both a lack of funding and a poor relationship with communities living around (or within) them. Although many efforts aimed at coral reef management and conservation within MPAs in Vietnam have been initiated and implemented, policymakers repeatedly face questions such as how do local residents feel they have been affected by the establishment of the MPA? Will active management of an MPA provide greater net economic benefits in the long term? How can these benefits be ‘captured’, both to fund MPA management and provide socio-economic stability for local communities?. Using the HonMun MPA as an example, this study explores the relationships between (1) the economic value of coral reefs, (2) coastal livelihoods, (3) coral reef degradation and (4) possible policy interventions in Vietnam. We estimated the economic value of coral reefs in the Hon Mun MPA through a focus on reef fisheries and reef-related tourism, as well as non-use values provided by reef ecosystems. Livelihood aspects of reef use were investigated by engaging with different reef stakeholders. We found out how villagers perceived changes in both quality of life and resources, and uncovered their views on resource impacts on human activities. To derive a decision-making framework for the MPA management options, we analysed the costs and benefits of a ‘with MPA management’ scenario and a ‘without MPA management’ scenario. We also established linkages between economic values of coral reefs, financial sustainability and local socioeconomic issues.

EfD Authors

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Sustainable Development Goals
Publication reference
Khanh, N. P., & van Beukering, P. J. H. (n.d.). Economics of conservation for the Hon Mun Marine Protected Area in Vietnam. Nature’s Wealth, 134–154. doi:10.1017/cbo9781139225311.008
Publication | 3 July 2021