COMIFAC-PPECF: 2015 World Forestry Congress -Enhancing forest governance in Central Africa
This COMIFAC side event organized by the Program for the Promotion of Certified Forests (PPECF) and moderate by Dr Paul Scholt (GIZ Support Program Manager) brought together some fifty participants to present and discuss efforts made by COMIFAC and Central African countries towards sustainable management of Congo basin forests and the well-being of indigenous communities... It specifically aimed to: (i) present initiatives launched by COMIFAC and its partners to promote forest governance in Central Africa; and ii) present efforts made by Central African countries in the area of forest governance; (iii) discuss key related issues, including those relating to markets, legality, participation in and sharing of benefits and new land uses; iv) propose measures to improve and strengthen forest governance for the well-being of communities...
Kindly download the presentations below :
Informative note before the side event:
Central Africa’s tropical forests span nearly 140 million hectares and, in addition to timber, teem with a wealth of plant and animal NTFPs for the well-being of communities. In addition to the constitutive treaty relating to the conservation and sustainable management of forest ecosystems in Central Africa adopted by the Heads of State in Brazzaville in 2005, the convergence plan sets out priority interventions for forests in the sub-region.
At national level, each COMIFAC country is equipped with a battery of legislative and legal tools for sustainable forest management which are used to assess progress in: (A) increasing the surface area of production forests under development and certified forest surface areas, (b) increasing their value for the benefit of the countries (taxes) and local communities (specifications), (c) increasing the surface area of protected areas (creating new protected areas) estimated at more than 50 million ha, (d) signing of voluntary partnership agreements between certain countries and the European Union under the FLEGT forest governance enhancement process. However, these advances have come up against a host of governance challenges, including some which directly impact the sustainability of forests and the people who live in them, including: (i) increased illegal logging and poaching; ii) low participation of local and vulnerable populations in sustainable forest management; iii) threats related to new uses of forest land which need to be regulated by law.
This side event therefore represents an opportunity to highlight some of the challenges and proposed solutions by informing practitioners, and then discuss these issues to fuel reflection on possibilities of balancing the interests of all parties.