Global support initiative to implement good governance for forest conservation
Title: Global Support Initiative Forest Governance (FGP) Commissioned by: German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)
overall term: 2011 to 2018
Global interest in stopping tropical deforestation is greater than ever before. International initiatives for forest conservation – Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation (REDD+) and Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) – are intended to improve institutional, legal and organisational frameworks in the partner countries. The REDD+ initiative, which has its origins in climate policy, has considerable funding and pursues ambitious goals, combined with elaborate procedures and complex content specifications. The FLEGT initiative, originally set up to combat illegal logging, is primarily promoted by the European Union (EU) and its member states. It aims to ensure compliance with national forest-related laws on timber harvesting, processing and export. It thus makes an important contribution to curbing deforestation and forest degradation.
Developing countries are keen to participate in these initiatives. But neither the partner countries nor the institutions responsible for implementing the initiatives, such as the World Bank or the EU Commission, have the resources required to negotiate the necessary agreements and strategies quickly and to implement them. The success of the international REDD+ and FLEGT efforts to preserve forests is thus called into question..
In the partner countries of German development cooperation, the effectiveness of international forest governance initiatives such as REDD+ and FLEGT has been enhanced.
The project works in close cooperation with other local projects. The focus of its support is on the development and negotiation of national REDD+ strategies and voluntary FLEGT partnership agreements. It provides expert advice, sends experts, develops and implements individual measures, such as workshops, training, publications and pilot measures, and makes financial contributions. All measures are systematically pursued in cooperation with international partners, including the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) or the European Forest Institute (EFI). Implementation partners are representatives of governments, government agencies and civil society groups in the partner countries and international organisations.
The project has contributed significantly to the development of national REDD+ strategies, the negotiation of voluntary partnership agreements within the framework of FLEGT and to finding solutions to specific governance challenges in partner countries.
In Laos, for instance, a BMZ-financed FLEGT project to support the Laotian FLEGT process was initiated with the help of the Forest Governance Programme (FGP).
In Honduras and Côte d'Ivoire, the project finances experts who helped national stakeholders on site to negotiate a voluntary partnership agreement with the EU.
Within the framework of REDD+, the project has supported an analysis of existing strategies, regulations and legislation in Laos. The results are part of the national REDD+ strategy to take account of social and environmental standards in the implementation of the REDD+ process.
In the Philippines, unresolved land ownership and usage rights are a key governance problem leading to the degradation of natural resources. A participatory land rights study supported by the programme has re-ignited the national debate on land rights, from which the local indigenous population in particular should benefit in the course of the programme.