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54. On the basis of Secretariat Note FO:APFC/2008/7 and presentations from a panel of experts, the Commission considered recent developments in institutional arrangements and international agreements.

55. The Commission was informed of recent developments within the United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF), the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD).

56. The Commission welcomed the reported progress, including the development of the non-legally-binding instrument on forests, increased linkages with regional forest-related organizations and the multi-year programme of work in UNFF; the pending entry into force of the International Tropical Timber Agreement 2006; the review of CBD’s Programme of Work on Forest Biodiversity; and UNCCD’s adoption of a 10-year strategic plan. The Commission provided an opportunity for members to discuss how inputs from the region to the eighth session of the United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF8) could be achieved.

57. The Commission emphasized the contribution of sustainable forest management in combating land degradation, desertification and mitigating and adapting to climate change. Delegates acknowledged that sustainable forest management has been under-financed, and noted potential avenues for increasing funding, including from national and donor resources, payments for environmental services, private-sector resources, and through international processes, as appropriate for the respective member countries.

58. Delegates noted an increasing number of international agencies with involvement in the forests agenda. The Commission urged international agencies to coordinate closely to minimize overlaps in work programmes and ensure maximum efficiency in resource utilization.

59. The Commission noted the importance of forestry agreements reached at the thirteenth Conference of the Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) and requested FAO and other international agencies to facilitate reporting of the outcomes of international forestry processes to UNFCCC.

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