Huge turnout of CBFP members in Shanghai, China: Minister of State and CBFP Facilitator François-Xavier de Donnea strengthens dialogue between Congo Basin and key Chinese actors of the Forestry-timber sector
From 21 to 25 October 2019 in Shanghai, China), Minister of State and CBFP Facilitator, Francois-Xavier de Donnea, took part in the International Forum on Green Supply Chains for forest products industry, entitled : “Together towards Global Green Supply Chains - A Forest Products Industry Initiative” : Flyer du Forum international disponible en téléchargement...
The Board and Assembly meetings of the International Tropical Timber Association (ITTTA) were held on the sidelines of the Forum.
The Forum aimed to promote the development of legal and sustainable supply chains that would foster best practices in production, encourage responsible purchasing practices while providing additional benefits such as poverty alleviation, job creation, economic growth, income generation, etc.
The Forum was jointly hosted by Chinese and international partners: The Global Green Supply Chain and Leading Enterprises Dialogue Workshop (GGSC), CTWPDA (Chinese Association timber product distribution), the International Technical Tropical Timber Association (ATIBT) and the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) and with the help of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership.
The CBFP Facilitator took the floor during the session on the “Timber Industry’s role in climate change and development” and moderated the CBFP session entitled “State and Future of the Congo Basin Forests”: Agenda du Forum en téléchargement.
Over the last decade, following the implementation of the foreign expansion policy aimed at promoting Chinese investment abroad, Chinese businesses-both private and State-owned- have shown growing interest in natural resources and other investment opportunities in the Congo Basin. It is currently estimated that over 70 % of sales of African forest products go to Asia (including China).
However, there are no Chinese private or public organizations within the CBFP or ITTTA. From the CBFP’s standpoint therefore, the Shanghai Forum is meant to rally the major Chinese timber importers and loggers to join the CBFP’s efforts to establish widespread compliance with rules of good conduct among Chinese companies active in Central Africa. Minister of State François-Xavier de Donnea, the CBFP Facilitator urged the Chinese partners to join the CBFP (for instance through the Private Sector College).
Furthermore, the CBFP Facilitator had previously presented the CBFP and the benefits of CBFP membership for China to various Chinese partners he had met in Beijing on 25 and 26 April, on the sidelines of the second International Forum on the Silk Road “Belt and Road Initiative”: the Vice-Minister of Ecology and Environment, His Excellency Mr. Zhao Yingmin and senior officials of the Forestry Department as well as officials of the “Global Green Supply Chain China (GGSC)”. Refer back to: Développement durable: François-Xavier de Donnea participe au 2e Forum International sur la Route de la Soie.
The GGSC is coordinated by Dr. Luo Xinjian and headed on the one hand by the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) and on the other hand by various Chinese organizations (the Chinese Academy of Forestry and Chinese professional organizations): The Chinese Timber Wood Products Distribution Association, the Chinese Forest Products Industry Association and the Shanghai Timber Trade Association, as well as research organizations). This is why the GGSC is a rudimentary form of a collaboration platform between China and international organizations active in sustainable forest development.
A number of salient points were made on the Congo Basin during the forum:
- The CBFP Facilitator made a strong case for China’s participation in international organizations for the protection of forest industry products with the aim of promoting widespread compliance with rules of good conduct.
- Chinese partners are becoming increasingly engaged, as they become aware of the crucial need to protect forests in order to continue enjoying the revenue they generate and avoid early depletion of financially profitable resources. This is in line with China’s approach to environmental protection which is chiefly driven by economic considerations and often translates into swift and concrete action.