COMIFAC - the Central African Forests Commission
The legal basis for the Central African Forests Commission (COMIFAC) was laid in 1999 with the Yaoundé Declaration, concluded during the Summit meeting of the Heads of State of Cameroon, the Republic of Congo, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, and the Central African Republic. The Declaration recognizes the protection of the Congo basin ecosystems as an integral component of the development process and reaffirms the signatories' commitment to work together to promote the sustainable use of the Congo basin forest ecosystems.
The conference of ministers in charge of the forests of Central Africa (COMIFAC), later on established as the "Central African Forests Commission", received mandate to coordinate the monitoring of activities aimed at implementing the Declaration in the region.
The COMIFAC Convergence Plan, adopted by the Head of State of Central Africa in 2005, defines a common regional intervention strategy for the countries of the subregion and their international development partners.
The Convergence Plan was developed and adopted during the Brazzaville Summit. It was revised and adopted in July 2014, during and extraordinary COMIFAC Ministers concil. The Convergence Plan outlines the planned actions for sustainable forest management and conservation in Central Africa, including regional, national and transboundary. The plan’s strategies include harmonising forest and tax policies, developing alternative forest activities, and reducing poverty through sustainable forestry livelihoods. CBFP members were allocated responsibility for leading and contributing to each theme at various levels.
The revised and adopted version of July 2014 for the period 2015-2025, is broken down into six (6) priority axes of intervention:
- Axis 1 Harmonization of forest and environmental policies;
- Axis 2 Sustainable management and exploitation of forest resources;
- Axis 3 Conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity;
- Axis 4 Combating the effects of climate change and desertification;
- Axis 5 Socio-economic development and multi-stakeholder participation;
- Axis 6 Sustainable financing.
The convergence plan also comprises three (3) cross-cutting axes:
- T1 Training and capacity building;
- T2 Research and Development
- T3 Communication, awareness, information and edu-cation.