COFO-2001/5


COMMITTEE ON FORESTRY

Item 8(a) of the Provisional Agenda

FIFTEENTH SESSION

Rome, Italy, 12-16 March 2001

REVIEW OF FAO PROGRAMMES IN THE
FORESTRY SECTOR, INCLUDING
THE PROGRAMME IMPLEMENTATION REPORT (1998-99) AND FOLLOW-UP TO
THE REQUESTS AND RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE 14TH SESSION OF THE COMMITTEE

Secretariat Note

Table of Contents


INTRODUCTION

ANNEX A: Follow-Up to the recommendations of the Fourteenth Session of the Committee 


INTRODUCTION

1. This note is to inform the Committee about FAO forestry activities funded under the Regular Programme budget, and FAO-executed projects funded through UNDP and donor trust funds in 1999-2000. Annex A indicates actions or proposals made in response to the specific requests and recommendations of the fourteenth session of the Committee.

2. The present document contains, for the information of the Committee, the extract of the Programme Implementation Report 1998-1999 (PIR), concerning Major Programme 2.4 Forestry. It is recalled that the PIR is a Conference document, designed to provide synthetic information to the Governing Bodies on achievements in the past biennium.

3. The reported achievements for the Major Programme are preceded by a recapitulative table on implementation results in financial terms, including related field activities, and in terms of effective implementation of the planned outputs in the Programme of Work and Budget.

4. It may be noted that the entire text of the PIR is available for consultation from FAO's Internet Web-site, at the following address: http://www.fao.org/unfao/bodies/pir/ . At the same address, a more detailed database can also be consulted on the planned outputs for the 1998-99 biennium, and their implementation status.

5. The text of the PIR below, with paragraph numbers from 284 to 312 in italics, has been annotated to update the information through the year 2000.

Extract from Programme Implementation Report 1998-99: Major Programme 2.4: Forestry

Regular Programme   US$000
  Programme of Work 31,142
  Budgetary Transfers (90)
  Final Programme of Work 31,052
  Expenditure 30,496
  (Over)/Under Spending, US$ '000 556
  (Over)/Under Spending, % 2%
Field Programme   US$000
  Extra-Budgetary TF and UNDP Delivery 66,878
  Extra-Budgetary Emergency Project Delivery 259
  TCP Delivery 3,996
  Total Field Programme Delivery 71,133
  Ratio of Field to Regular Programme 2.3
  Technical Support Services, Prof. Staff Cost 2,779
  Technical Support Services, % of delivery 4%
Programme Outcome
 

Approved in PWB

Cancelled/ Postponed 

Unplanned Delivered 

Total delivered

Delivered

%

Un-

modified

Modified

Delivered

Methodologies and Guidelines

26

(8)

3

21

14

7

81%

Coordination and Information Exchange

0

0

0

0

0

0

 
Information Systems and Data Bases

20

(1)

2

21

14

7

105%

International Undertakings and Agreements

0

0

0

0

0

0

 
Meetings

35

(6)

11

40

37

3

114%

Publications

75

(19)

10

66

51

15

88%

Training

4

(1)

2

5

4

1

125%

Support to Member Countries and the Field

43

0

7

50

46

4

116%

Achievements

[284. The programme focused on sustainable forest management. The FAO Strategic Plan for Forestry was developed in consultation with the member countries through the six regional forestry commissions and the Committee on Forestry. The plan complemented the Strategic Framework for FAO 2000-2015, with the following priorities:

The under spending of US$ 556,000 shown in the above table mainly resulted from external income and internal transfers for technical support services having been US$ 574,000 less than the amount programmed in the Programme of Work and Budget 1998-1999.

285. The Second Ministerial Meeting on Sustainability Issues: Forestry, the National and International Challenges was convened in March 1999. The 439 delegates from 127 member countries adopted the Rome Declaration on Forestry, pledging to improve forest management and promote cooperation to achieve sustainable management worldwide.

Programme 2.4.1: Forest Resources

286. Support continued for development and implementation of criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management at national and field level, including the further strengthening of processes in the Near East and the dry zone in Africa.]

6. Support was continued to develop and ensure compatibility of concepts and terms, among on-going international initiatives on criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management, and to the development of assessment and measurement guidelines for field level implementation within the Near East and dry-zone Africa processes. Support was also continued to the adoption and implementation of the concept of model forests through collaboration in a series of international workshops on Model Forests for Field Level Application of Sustainable Forest Management, hosted by Japan and the initiation of a regional FAO/Japan Trust Fund project in support of model forests and networking between countries in SE Asia.

[287. Significant progress was made on the Forest Resources Assessment for 2000 (FRA 2000), the most comprehensive study ever of world forest and woodland resources, including special studies of environmental attributes. Global forest maps and databases were updated; workshops were held in many countries on methods for the year 2000 assessment. FRA 2000 is being conducted by the countries themselves, with FAO coordinating, but with an emphasis on capacity-building. Findings will be released in reports and on the Internet in 2000-01.]

7. FRA 2000 was completed and is reported on in COFO agenda item 8(b).

[288. A worldwide information system on forest genetic resources (REFORGEN) was developed. Information was assembled, analysed and disseminated on improved productivity and conservation of biological diversity in forest ecosystems. Institutions involved in forest genetic resources were supported, including through facilitation of workshops in Sahelian Africa and in the Pacific Islands. A guide to in situ conservation of forest genetic resources was developed and distributed in draft.]

8. FAO supported the organization of a number of country-driven sub-regional and regional forest genetic resources workshops, with a view to the development of a coherent global framework for action. Workshops and corresponding action plans were organized and discussed in the Sahelian Zone of Africa, the Pacific Islands, and Southern and Eastern Africa. The 11th Session of the Panel of Experts on Forest Gene Resources (September 1999) recommended action based on country-derived needs and priorities, and drew up lists of priority species by region and activity for attention by FAO, the international community and national governments.

[289. The Asia Pacific Forestry Commission, with FAO support, established a working group on sustainable forest management. The problem of implementation at field level is being tackled with guidelines for sustainable timber harvesting developed in consultation with governments, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) and the private sector, an excellent example of a partnership approach to a regional problem. Work is carried out by member countries, with FAO as facilitator.

290. Pest management networks were developed in Eastern and Southern Africa; support was provided for similar networks in West Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean. Pest-control strategies were developed as part of management planning in several countries, reducing the extent of forest lost or degraded due to insects and disease.]

9. In Lebanon, an outbreak of a new insect (Cephalcia sp.) seriously affecting cedars (Cedrus libani) was confirmed and in consequence the country responded through emergency treatment. Through TCP projects, FAO supported a number of countries in combating forest pests and diseases, including Bulgaria, Romania, Moldova, Slovakia and the Maldives.

[291. Plantations are increasingly important sources of timber and fibre to meet growing global demand. FAO provides information and support for the establishment, management and protection of forest plantations, including utilisation of improved tree species that are ecologically and commercially appropriate. Outputs included:

10. Activities concentrated on assistance to countries in the assembly of information on plantation areas and yields, and the aggregation of information at global level focused on the preparation and provision of inputs to the Global Forest Resources Assessment 2000 programme. FAO supported the meeting on The Role of Planted Forests in Sustainable Forest Management, sponsored by the Governments of Chile, Denmark, India, New Zealand and Portugal, held in support of the work programme of the Intergovernmental Panel on Forests (IPF) in Chile in April 1999. FAO provided support to the international Seminar on Environmental Effects, Technologies and Benefits of species of the genus Eucalyptus, held in collaboration with the Inter-American Development Bank in Mexico City in October 1999. FAO and the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO), in collaboration with the Philippines, convened the International Conference on Timber Plantation Development in November 2000.

[292. Management of trees outside forests was emphasised in rural development programmes. Management of silvo-pastoral ecosystems in arid zones and of trees in irrigated farming schemes were supported. Networks were established in Africa and Latin America to share information and develop effective agroforestry and soil conservation to combat desertification. Work continued on promoting best practices for dryland forest management through published guidelines and support for workshops facilitating exchanges of experience, particularly in West and Southern Africa.]

11. Support to the process of implementation of the Convention to Combat Desertification (CCD) has continued through assistance for the formulation of National Action Programmes, support to the establishment of a CCD Secretariat-sponsored regional network on agroforestry and land resources conservation. The promotion of dryland forestry programmes, including dryland forest plantation such as in Egypt and Yemen, established with the use of sewage water, the management of natural forests of dry zones in the region, and the documentation of multi-purpose trees or groups of trees in the region, have been effected. Studies will be carried out on urban forestry in coastal areas and small islands, and on the linkages between forest and tree degradation and impoverishment around cities. Guidelines for urban planning will be developed to support member countries integrate tree and forest components into urban planning. Support was provided to the integration of trees outside forests (TOF) in sustainable forest resource management through the preparation of 10 case studies for the FRA 2000 and the initiation of a sourcebook on TOF. Documentation of multipurpose tree species and agroforestry systems in food security programmes has continued.

[293. As task manager for Chapter 13 of Agenda 21 - Managing Fragile Ecosystems: Sustainable Mountain Development - FAO leads preparations for the International Year of Mountains (2002), a collaborative undertaking to develop common approaches addressing an issue critical to sustainable development. Significant progress was made in 1998-99.]

12. Further progress in the International Year of Mountains (IYM) is reported on under agenda item 10.

[294. FAO particularly supports management of wildlife and protected areas and conservation of biological diversity in Asia and Africa; the component is already strong in Latin America. The aim is more effective protected area management, fostering links with sustainable rural development.

295. FAO continued to coordinate wildlife conservation and protected area management through:

Protected Area Management and Sustainable Rural Development

The reconciliation of rural development with protected area management is essential to conservation of biodiversity and cultural heritage. In collaboration with the Government of Zimbabwe, FAO and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) co-hosted an International Technical Consultation in Zimbabwe in October 1999. The participants' communiqué advocates the need to:

  • move from authoritarian management towards accommodating the needs of society;
  • strengthen local institutions for managing protected areas while promoting sustainable development in local communities;
  • develop models for protected area management, sharing results;
  • increase sustainable benefits from protected areas to local communities;
  • urge governments to make provision for marginalised populations and communities in and around protected areas

FAO, UNEP and other organizations should continue to provide a forum for dialogue, especially at regional level, on reconciliation between protected area management and sustainable rural development.

The consultation recommended continuity and links between this Consultation and the forthcoming National Parks Congress in South Africa.

The 13th Session of the African Forestry Commission Working Party on Wildlife Management and National Parks revisited these issues, particularly management of protected areas.

13. An international technical consultation was organized in Zimbabwe (Harare, October 1999) to address the necessity of reconciling the objectives of protected area management with the needs of rural development, a global issue recognized as being of critical importance. It also examined the issues of collaborative resource management, the development of ecotourism, institutional and legal aspects. It issued recommendations and a communiqué which stressed the need for a new paradigm for conservation in which the needs of neighbouring populations should be clearly addressed.

Programme 2.4.2: Forest Products

[296. The Global Fibre Supply Model (GFSM), covering 95 percent of the world's forests, was made available through a CD-ROM in English, French or Spanish and the FAO Internet site. It projects fibre supply under three scenarios to 2010. Interaction with the private sector continues through the Advisory Committee on Paper and Wood Products (ACPWP). The Recovered Paper Data report was issued after a four-year interruption due to lack of resources. Participation continues in activities of the Association technique internationale des bois tropicaux (ATIBT).

297. To promote knowledge of the benefits of non-wood forest products (NWFPs) to household economies, food security and environmental conservation, expert consultations were held in Cameroon, Finland and Lebanon. Two editions of FAO's newsletter, Non-wood News, were published. A directory of NWFP agencies was developed.

298. FAO has an important role in considering technical aspects of forest practices with respect to climate change, supporting the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). FAO hosted an international consultation in Honduras in 1999 and contributed technical analyses to this issue.]

14. Land use, land use change and forestry are of relevance in climate change mitigation scenarios under the UNFCCC and the Kyoto Protocol. FAO intensified its contribution to the international climate change process through its role as repository of data; custodian of guidelines, methods, and models; and contributor to the process of defining the terminology and to capacity building. FAO hosted an international consultation in Bolivia in the year 2000, as well as an expert consultation on verification of national communications of carbon stocks and fluxes.

[299. Fuelwood and charcoal are environment-friendly energy sources for developed and rural communities. FAO serves as clearing house for information, assists in the systematic use of information about wood energy and has developed a global wood energy information system. Studies on fuelwood and charcoal organizations were distributed in Africa, Asia and Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) countries A study of socio-economic and environmental impacts of wood-based energy projects was published.]

15. The FAO Wood Energy Programme expanded its assistance to member countries in the collection of improved statistical data on woodfuel production and consumption. Further support was provided to the establishment of a "Unified Wood Energy Terminology" to harmonize terms, definitions and concepts related to wood energy used worldwide. Information and networking was provided through the Forest Energy Forum, published twice a year. A Memorandum of Understanding with the International Energy Agency (IEA) on Bionergy was signed in order to foster cooperation between both bodies and make use of synergies.

[300. There is agreement that improved wood utilisation in tropical harvesting areas reduces deforestation. Methods were developed to identify appropriate end-uses for sawn wood of lesser-known tropical trees. Information was compiled on new forest utilisation systems.

301. Results were published of an expert consultation on forest road surveying and of a seminar on environmentally sound forest transport in Romania held by FAO, the UN Economic Commission for Europe and the International Labour Organization (ILO). There was a workshop on developments in cable transport for wood and a seminar, in collaboration with the Government of Austria, on forest operations for countries in transition to market economies. Four case studies were prepared on reduced-impact harvesting in steep terrain.]

16. The Forest Harvesting and Engineering Programme continued to promote environmentally sound, economically feasible and socially acceptable forest operations. A number of activities were carried out to promote environmentally sound harvesting practices including the development of the Model Code of Forest Harvesting Practices at global, regional and national levels, as well as the Guidelines on Forest Roads. FAO prepared jointly with a number of other agencies the Regional Strategy for Implementing the Code of Practice for Forest Harvesting in Asia - Pacific, published in the year 2000 by the Asia- Pacific Forestry Commission. Joint FAO/ILO support was given to develop a National Code of Forest Harvesting Practice for China.

17. Working with a wide range of partners, FAO convened in February 2001 an International Conference on Reduced Impact Logging to Advance Sustainable Forest Management. Under the forest engineering programme, a Manual for the Planning, Design and Construction of Forest Roads in Mountainous Terrain, was prepared. Studies and publications on environmentally sound road construction in mountainous terrain in member countries (Austria, Bhutan, Nepal ) were carried out.

18. A joint ATIBT/FAO study on Road Infrastructure in Tropical Forests: Road to Development or Road to Destruction? (1999) draws attention to the role forest roads are playing in the social and economic development of tropical forest countries as well as to the environmental threats they may present.

[302. Two studies of the impact of forest products on development and the environment were published:

19. Forty-three tropical countries with broad-leaved forests were surveyed in order to collect information on current industrial timber harvesting schemes, establish a database with a file for each of these countries and analyse and evaluate the contribution of industrial timber harvesting to forest degradation as far as over-harvesting of timber and poor harvesting practices are concerned. A series of forest harvesting case studies is under way to underpin the results of the survey.

20. Under the current work on Environmental Impact Assessment Related to Forest Utilization, a study was carried out to establish a database which will catalogue information related to forest utilization in tropical broad-leaved forests covering selected countries in tropical Asia. The results of this study will form the basis for understanding the effects of industrial timber harvesting activities on natural forest resources. Some data and results of the study were made available to FRA 2000.

[303. Papers dealing with certification, trade restrictions and prospects were presented in Asia, Africa, Europe and North America. Inputs were provided in training workshops for developing countries, including a training course on the Uruguay Round and Future Multilateral Trade Negotiations in Agriculture.]

21. The Forestry Trade Programme continued to provide information and guidance on trade policy issues. In particular it was closely involved with issues concerning the relationship between trade and sustainable forest development, including aspects of the environment and trade, and with trade restrictions and future trade negotiations. Papers dealing with trade issues such as certification, trade restrictions and trade prospects have been presented at various meetings and conferences. Global papers were prepared on certification issues, and on the relationship between criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management and forest products certification. The latter was presented to a World Bank-WWF Alliance workshop held in Washington, D.C. in December 1999. The Forestry Department has been closely involved with an FAO series of training workshops for developing countries "Training Course on the Uruguay Round and Future Multilateral Trade Negotiations in Agriculture". Training material on forestry has been prepared for these courses. Work will continue on market access issues and trade policy topics, especially trade issues connected with sustainable forestry development, and issues relating to the proposed new global WTO round of trade negotiations. FAO convened jointly with ITTO and the German Agency for Technical Cooperation (GTZ) a workshop on multilateral recognition of different forest certification schemes (Rome, February 2001). Work has continued on market access issues and trade policy topics, especially those related to sustainable forestry development and to a possible future global WTO round of trade negotiations. The Forestry Department has been closely involved with an FAO series of training workshops for developing countries Training course on the Uruguay Round and future multilateral trade negotiations in agriculture.

[304. The Forest Products Marketing Programme has continued addressing issues of improved knowledge of current marketing practices, enhanced availability and access to marketing information,recognition of the marketing function, and development of human resources. A compendium of marketing databases was completed. Studies were made of log auction systems, marketing of medical plants, plantation timber prices and consumer attitudes towards forest products with environmental, social and sustainability attributes. FAO cooperated in organizing an International Workshop on Sustainable Development of Marketing of Non-wood Forest Products in Countries in Transition to Market Economies.]

Environmentally Sound Forest Roads

Opening roads is a precondition for sustainable forest utilisation; tropical forest roads are part of the transport infrastructure. Road construction is essential for using forest resources, but the infrastructure could be destroyed if not properly planned, particularly in areas with high population pressure.

Poor forest roads often result not from shortage of funds, modern equipment or methods but from lack of awareness of the negative impacts of badly made roads on the ecosystem. It pays to work close to nature.

The FAO programme Improvement of Forest Engineering and Harvesting proposes a strategy to reduce destructive impacts, calling for:

  • competent personnel;
  • pre-harvest network planning in relation to directional felling;
  • equipment requiring lower road density;
  • downgrading road width, saving costs and productive land;
  • re-establishing vegetation on disused roads and landings;
  • bypassing wet soils, streams, cultural or religious sites and habitats of rare plants and animals.

A recent FAO case study compares traditional logging, with 20 percent of the harvesting area affected by roads and landings, with an environmentally sound system in Brazil with only 4.5 percent.

22. FAO has published "Guidelines for the Strengthening and Establishment of Log Auction Systems" and "A Review of Studies on Consumer Attitudes towards Forest Products Marketed with Environmental, Social and/or Sustainability Attributes". In the year 2000, FAO extended its assistance in this field to CIS-countries through an international workshop on marketing of non-wood forest products in Countries in Transition to Market Economies in Moldova, organized jointly with the UN-ECE Timber Committee, the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), and the Moldovan and Finnish Ministries of Environment. FAO provided technical backstopping on production and marketing of Gum Arabic from Sudan, and on marketing forest products from Albania.

Programme 2.4.3: Forestry Policy and Planning

[305. The main barrier to sustainable forest management is insufficient institutional capability to pursue effective policies, especially in developing countries. The core of FAO forestry policy is collaboration with member countries to strengthen institutions. In 1998-99, FAO and local institutions organised four seminars in Latin America and the Caribbean, emphasising development of forestry policies and institutions; similar seminars are planned for other regions in 2000-01.]

23. As part of its regular programme, FAO produces a series of studies on the future trends in the forest sector. Asia-Pacific Forestry Towards 2010 was recently published. The main report and over fifty topical papers on key issues impacting better forest management in the region are available through the FAO Internet site. These regional forestry outlook studies rely on the efforts and goodwill of FAO's member countries and in the case of the Asian study, the national forestry agencies in North America made substantive in-kind contributions.

24. A global forest products outlook study was also recently completed in which research institutes in member countries of COFO played a significant role. The main reports and a series of technical analyses are available through the FAO Internet site.

25. Currently, FAO is undertaking a Forestry Sector Outlook Study for Africa. This is a partnership among the African member countries, FAO, the African Development Bank, the European Commission and the World Bank. This effort will include a substantive assessment of the current situation and an in-depth review of options for policy reform to improve performance of the forest sector with a view towards improving forest management. Information on the subject is available through the FAO website. Work on forestry sector outlook studies began for Latin America and the Caribbean, and for Europe.

26. Methodologies are being developed to improve forestry policy assessment and implementation, giving special importance to issues related to the intersectoral linkages and impact of external policies on forestry and to the implementation of policy instruments.

27. Case studies and various comparative regional and sub-regional research aimed at the identification of the political, economic and legal factors that determine the efficiency and effectiveness of forestry institutions are being carried out.

28. Regional Studies on Forestry Policy in the Caribbean in cooperation with the European Commission were carried out. The studies contributed to a review of national actions aimed at promoting sustainable forest resource utilisation, the follow-up of commitments made by countries in the framework of UNCED and the international assistance to the implementation of forestry policies and strategies.

29. A global survey of the status and progress of the nfp implementation was presented to the third session of the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests (IFF); it was revised in the light of comments received and the final draft was made available at IFF-4.

30. A Workshop on National Forestry Programmes was held in Istanbul, Turkey (October 1999). The participants emphasized the need for more FAO activities in the Region to contribute to improve and increase the country capacity to deal with aspects like forestry policy, national forestry programmes, people's participation and institutional development. As a follow-up, a workshop on Forestry Policy Formulation and Implementation for Near East Countries was held in Cairo, Egypt (June 2000).

[306. Forestry is a key area in many countries moving to market-based economies. During 1998-99, FAO provided training and direct assistance to several countries developing policies and legal frameworks for sustainable forest management in a market economy. In Slovakia, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania and Albania, this was coordinated under the TCP programme; in China, Mongolia, Myanmar and Vietnam, it was carried out in collaboration with Japan under the FAO/Government Cooperative Programme.

307. Many issues addressed by the World Bank in its forestry policy review are similar to those being analysed by the Forestry Department. During 1998-99, FAO and the World Bank undertook several in-depth analyses of the present situation and policy options for forestry issues such as sustainable management and livelihoods, governance, climate change and product markets. The results are a point of reference in decisions about forestry sector investment policies and priorities.

308. Support continued for regional research networks as tools to strengthen national capacities and regional cooperation. A regional meeting was organised in Brazil with the Empresa Brasileira de Pesquisa Agropecuaria (EMBRAPA) and the International Union of Forestry Research Organizations (IUFRO); an East Africa sub-regional meeting was held with the Kenya Forestry Research Institute, with links to networks in other African sub-regions. Assistance was provided to countries adapting forestry education and extension systems to new conditions. Case studies were prepared on forestry education in Central and Eastern Europe. Support was provided to Slovenia and Malawi to develop mechanisms for implementation of natural resource policies.]

31. Databases on forestry research organizations and on forestry training and education institutions were updated. Both will be accessible on the internet, with an improved interface, during 2000. Directories will be published using the information contained in the databases.

32. Assistance to member countries in adapting their forestry education and extension systems and approaches to the new requirements and conditions in the forestry sector remained a main focus. A publication was produced on "Pluralism and sustainable forestry and rural development", following an international workshop on the same theme. Case studies were undertaken on forestry curriculum revision in different regions to gather information on current trends and practical experiences in implementing new approaches aiming to better assess and respond to the changing needs in the sector. They will serve as a base for the publication of guidelines for forestry curriculum definition and revision.

33. Strengthening capacities and networking in forestry research in developing countries remained a main focus. The Forestry Research Support Programme for Asia and the Pacific (FORSPA) continued to support the development of the Asia-Pacific Association of Forestry Research Institutions (APAFRI). Efforts towards the establishment of the Forestry Research Network for sub-Saharan Africa (FORNESSA) were pursued, in cooperation with other partners such as IUFRO-SPDC. At the same time, specific support in research prioritisation and planning was given to countries with inadequately developed research capacity.

34. The Community Forestry Unit (CFU) during the biennium focused on activities for promoting and facilitating an enabling environment for participatory forest management, working in: natural resource conflict management; the participatory process for supporting collaborative management of natural resources; marketing analysis and development for community-based forest and tree product enterprises; devolution and decentralization issues; and gender and forestry. Many of the activities were undertaken with the support of the multi-donor trust fund, the "Forests, Trees and People Programme" (FTPP). FTPP activities are focused on strengthening the capacities of organizations at different levels (projects, grassroots organizations, NGOs and decision-makers). Activities undertaken in the Africa region included workshops, publications and tool kits on topics central to broadening the base of support for sustainable forest management.

35. Participatory forestry activities in the Asia Pacific region, including those of the FTPP, focused on developing innovative approaches, methods and tools for community-based natural resource management and supporting participatory processes in the formulation and implementation of policy. Priority areas include market analysis and development (MA-&-D), participatory processes, gender, conflict management, rural learning networks, impact of decentralization on forest management and communities, and forestry and sustainable livelihoods.

36. FAO, together with the Regional Community Forestry Training Center (RECOFTC) and the Philippine Department of Environment and Natural Resources, organized the International Seminar on Decentralization and Devolution of Forest Management, in December 1998, in Davao, Philippines. The seminar was attended by nearly 200 individuals and highlighted the important movement toward decentralized forest management in the region.

37. As part of a global initiative on community based prevention of forest fires, a "Case Study on Management of Forest Fires through Involvement of Local Communities" was prepared in Turkey for publication by the CFU. Case studies are being developed on community involvement in forest protection in Central America. In collaboration with GCP/INT/539/ITA and the FAO Office in Syria, the CFU publication entitled "Gender Analysis and Forestry Training Package" has been translated into Arabic. Partners are being identified for training and case study development for adaptation of the Gender Package materials during 2000.

[309. The State of the World's Forests 1999 (SOFO 99) extended SOFO 95 and 97 to address policy and institutional developments, future directions and external influences on the sector. Released in connection with the 14th session of the Committee on Forestry, it was well received as a publication demonstrating the links between forest resources and management, environmental and social services of forests and the evolving institutional framework.]

38. The fourth edition of the State of the World's Forests in the five languages of FAO, is to be released at the 15th Session of the Committee on Forestry.

[310. Member countries have requested FAO and other organizations to improve collaboration in collecting information, reducing duplication and national reporting burdens. As an example of improvements made in 1998-99, FAO, the UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE), the Statistical Office of the European Communities (EUROSTAT) and the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) developed a questionnaire about production and trade of forest products. The information is requested only once per year; results are available to partners and internationally via the Internet and statistical publications, including FAO's Forest Products Yearbook.]

Programme 2.4.4: Forest Programmes Coordination and Information

39. This programme covers:

40. Support to the follow-up to UNCED was largely given to the IFF during the biennium, especially to its intersessional meetings. Strong support was given to the work of the ITFF.

[311. The Interagency Task Force on Forests (ITFF), chaired by FAO, coordinates the work of forestry organizations informally at high level. It includes the:

312. Established in 1995, ITFF continued to support the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests in 1998-99.]

Global Forestry Information

FAO's expanded Forestry Internet site opened during the 14th session of the Committee on Forestry (Rome, March 1999), providing policy and technical information on sustainable forest management and hyperlinks to forestry Internet sites in member countries and partner institutions. An innovation is that much of the information is automatically updated through links with FAO-World Agricultural Information Centre (WAICENT) databases. Visitors can navigate by country, subject or organization. This site is a major step toward providing a global forestry information centre

41. Development has continued on the FAO Forestry Information System and the associated Web site, with significant improvements in layout, content and linkages, including the possibility for remote data entry as well as retrieval. A new staff position has been created specifically to manage the information system. A significant commitment has been made to further broadening the language coverage of FAO Forestry Information. The summary pages for all of the Web site, including the country pages, are being prepared in Arabic as well as English, French and Spanish. The FAO Strategic Plan for Forestry has been published in all five working languages, as has been the informative brochure FAO, Forests and Forestry. Major efforts have been made to improve dissemination and promotion of FAO Forestry publications, including the Forestry Papers, Conservation Guides and Miscellaneous documents. An updated catalogue of FAO Forestry publications is available both electronically and in printed copy. The entire 50-year collection of the FAO flagship forestry periodical Unasylva has been made available electronically, both on the FAO Forestry Web site, and on CD-ROM.

Field Programme

42. FAO has noted a decline in extra-budgetary non-emergency field programme support in recent years, which has also been matched in the Forestry Department. The table (above) in the PIR for 1998-99 states a total delivery for the Field Programme of US$71 million, of which most was derived from Trust funds and UNDP. A comparable figure for 1996-97 was US$79,362,000 as reported in the PIR 1996-97.

43. An analysis of the Field Programme projects in 1998 showed that just over one third of the projects were interregional, followed by projects in Asia (22%), Africa (20%) and Latin America (15%). In terms of topic, most projects were concerned with forest resources and the environment (58%), institutions (35%) and forest products (7%).

44. Headquarters-based Trust Fund projects had a total budget of US$17.6 million in 2000, with annual delivery of about US$5.9 million. They include support to a wide range of activities ranging from the FRA and FTPP but also to: data collection and analysis in ACP countries; the Forestry Outlook Study for Africa; support for the development of participatory processes in forest management, institutional support to Albania; staff secondment to the former IFF and many more. The main donors to the Trust Fund projects have been Belgium, the European Commission, Finland, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

45. The value of TCP projects active in mid-2000 were estimated at nearly US$3 million. These projects are active for short periods of a few months to over one year or occasionally more, but this total may be taken as the approximate annual value. TCP projects included support to national forest programme development in Africa, Latin America and countries with economies in transition and emergency activities in insect control in Eastern Europe.

46. Through its Investment Centre, FAO provides a range of services aimed at assisting interested countries in mobilizing investment in forest development and at enhancing investment performance. Work typically begins with a review of forest sector policy and culminates in project formulation and presentation of project proposals to potential funding sources. Strong emphasis is given to a participatory process involving all concerned groups and individuals. Between 1991 and 1995 forestry projects valued at $US850 million were prepared by the Investment Centre.

47. A key feature of the Field Programme is its interrelationship between the normative technical and policy-related work undertaken by staff at FAO headquarters and the duties of regional and subregional officers who backstop field projects and ensure two-way exchanges of expertise and experience. In fact, headquarters-based staff spend an estimated 15 percent of their time assisting field projects.

48. FAO is giving increasing importance to developing partnerships in its execution of the Field Programme. Such partnerships have traditionally been with donor countries who fund projects or programmes which FAO executes, which are now increasingly also with national institutions. A new approach in support of the both the Regular and the Field Programmes has been the Partnership Programme. Through partnership arrangements based on the concept of Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries (TCDC), "visiting experts" from national, regional and international centres of high repute work together with FAO staff in programme activities of the Organization for mutual benefit.

ANNEX A
FOLLOW-UP TO THE RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE FOURTEENTH SESSION OF THE COMMITTEE

The following table summarizes the recommendations of the fourteenth session of the Commission and the action taken or proposed.

RECOMMENDATION

ACTION TAKEN OR PROPOSED

(i) UNCED follow-up, including Implications of the work of the Intergovernmental Forum on Forests

The Committee:

 
recognized the critical roles of national forest programmes (nfps) and related capacity-building in achieving the sustainable management of forests. It urged FAO to continue to support nfps and to assist in institutional strengthening and endorsed FAO's current review of the status of nfp formulation and implementation. Recognizing the usefulness of nfps as planning tools, it recommended that their formulation and implementation should not be limited to developing countries. It stressed the need to further support work connected with nfps and other national plans in countries with low forest cover and those affected by desertification and drought, and recommended strengthened partnerships between FAO, the International Fund for Agricultural Development and the Secretariat of the Global Mechanism for the Convention to Combat Desertification, among others (para. 12). (paras 12, 38, 49) FAO has continued to support nfp development and implementation. Reports to the 30th session of the European Forestry Commission indicated that developed countries are formulating and implementing nfps. FAO has supported the Secretariat of the Tehran Process, an initiative aims at revising national forest policies and programmes in many low forst cover countries (LFCCs), where nfps should be a tool to secure broad stakeholder participation in forest, woodland, tree and range rehabilitation. Support has been given to the Islamic Republic of Iran in the formulation of a strategy to address the specific needs of LFCCs, design appropriate national forest programmes (in co-ordination with the CCD NAPs, the NAPE, etc), and establish adapted funding mechanisms for the implementation of these activities. FAO has contracted a MOU with the CCD Global Mechanism.
recognized that the identification and implementation of criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management were important to the sustainable management of forests and recommended FAO's continued support to regional processes on criteria and indicators, and that efforts should work towards better integration of criteria and indicators in forest planning at national and forest management unit levels and further consolidation and improved compatibility of agreed sets of criteria and indicators (para 13). FAO continued to closely follow and support all on-going international criteria and indicators processes. Since the 14th Session of COFO, FAO in collaboration with UNEP supported meetings of the Dry-Zone Africa and the Near East Processes and two meetings in India, the latter resulting in the Dry-Forests Asia Process. The preparation of assessment guidelines for field-level implementation was supported within the first-mentioned two Processes. Collaboration with IUFRO continued to scientifically underpin the work underway. An Expert Consultation was facilitated by FAO in collaboration with UNEP, ITTO, CIFOR and IUFRO in November 2000, aimed to facilitate dialogue, promote the exchange of information, experiences and know-how, help ensure complementarity and compatibility among Processes, and discuss and agree upon joint future action in implementation.
recommended that FAO continue to promote cooperation through existing regional groups and processes to identify criteria and indicators for sustainable forest management; endorsed FAO's efforts in capacity building, policy and planning, cross-sectoral issues and investment and technical cooperation in the forest sector, and recommended that resources allocated to the FAO Forestry Department be increased to be consistent with the increased role of forests in member countries and the countries' increased demands on FAO (paras. 14 and 15). See response to para. 13 regarding promotion of cooperation in criteria and indicators.

Regarding the allocation of resources to the FAO Forestry Department, the FAO Conference approved a budget for 2000-01 which included a small increase in resources for forestry. However, extra-budgetary resources to support the forestry normative programme have been gradually increasing. These resources are currently about 50% of the RP budget and are projected to be about 60% in addition to estimated RP resources during the MTP planning period (approx. US$9 million/ year extra-budgetary vs. approx. US$15 million /year RP).

(ii) Global Forest Sector Outlook

The Committee:

 
thanked FAO for its work on outlook studies that contained useful information for all countries and recommended that FAO continue to give high priority to regional and global outlook studies in its programme of work (para. 17). High priority has continued to be given to outlook studies. During the biennium the Forestry Outlook Study for Africa has been started and a parallel effort has been launched in Latin America and the Caribbean.
noting that there was great variation between the forest sectors of different regions and countries, requested that FAO give greater recognition to this and reflect it in its outlook studies; and also consider in its future outlook studies the trends in substitution of wood by other, less environmentally-friendly, materials such as aluminium, steel and plastic. In particular, it stressed the need for such studies to highlight that forest products come from a renewable resource (para. 19). Study components are tailored to the specific issues influencing forest management options and opportunities. Regional differences have been considered in designing the LAC study, which will highlight that forest products come from a renewable resource. At the Workshop on Information and Outlook Study of the Forestry Sector in Latin America, (Santiago, Chile, October 2000), participants formulated a Project for the Regional Outlook Study.
- stressed the significance of sustainable forest management on future forest sector development and noted that the achievement of sustainable forest management would be a long-term process and that there were important financial implications, which must be considered and dealt with. It recommended that FAO, through its outlook studies, analyze the full range of policies that play a critical role in the implementation of sustainable forest management (para. 20). To promote implementation of sustainable forest management, technical guidelines were prepared on the management of tropical forests for the production of wood; and non-wood products; and work was started to prepare similar guidelines for the management of secondary tropical forests. Guidelines are also being prepared on the use of computerized forest management systems in support of field level action.

Analysing and documenting the financial arrangements necessary to underpin sustainable forest management is a now a regular component of the forest sector outlook study. The forest sector studies in Africa and in Latin America & the Caribbean are analysing the full range of policies that play a critical role in the implementation of sustainable forest management. The most important mechanism is the direct involvement of national officials and experts in the study process. Through workshops, national reports and subregional analysis, the country representatives review and discuss a wide range of policy options.

recommended that FAO continue to broaden its work on the collection, exchange and dissemination of information in a transparent manner, in order to improve the quality of the regional and global outlook studies and aid policy development in member countries (para. 21). FAO has continued to broaden the forestry information collected, especially through the FRA2000, as an aid to improving the outlook studies and policy development in member countries.

Through a continuing series of workshops on information collection and analysis, FAO is strengthening the capacity of a growing network of national correspondents that are improving the quality and timeliness of data shared by FAO's member countries. More and more of the FAOSTAT data on forest products is provided directly into FAO's databanks by regional institutions and national correspondents. These data and the FAO Yearbook of Forest Products are now available in the five working languages of the Organization.

(iii) National forest policies for sustainability: national and international challenges

The Committee:

  
noted the many national and international challenges to forest policy formulation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation when seeking to move to the sustainable management of forests. Recognizing FAO's expertise covering forestry, agriculture, animal husbandry, fisheries, and rural development, it requested FAO to play a major role in addressing these intersectoral issues (paras. 22 and 23). FAO has continued to play a major role in addressing intersectoral issues, largely thorough nfps. Examples include:

a) creation of national awareness on the need to develop/adjust/modify and formulate appropriate forestry policies, plans, strategies, rules and instruments to facilitate their implementation, e.g. support formulation of new forestry and wildlife laws and regulations (Honduras, Cuba, Cambodia, Fiji, Slovakia, Latvia, Lithuania, Vanuatu, Niger), the formulation of forestry policies (Vietnam, Namibia, Slovakia, Latvia, Lithuania), and the formulation of nfps/plans/agenda or strategies (Brazil, Hungary, Vietnam, Mexico, Cyprus, Bolivia, Armenia, Romania);

b) strengthening country capacity through the establishment, strengthening and improvement of forestry national institutions, (Latvia, Lithuania, Suriname, Brazil, Chile, Mozambique, Grenada, Equatorial Guinea, etc.);

c) enforcement and implementation of international agreements, supporting technically and institutionally related implementation mechanisms (Amazon Treaty);

d) improve people's participation in policy making and implementation (FTP programme, Mozambique, Nepal, Algeria, China, etc.);

e) support to strengthening institutions in countries in transition, (for Eastern Europe and Asia countries);

f) training activities in forestry policy analysis, formulation and implementation (Regional Seminars for the Near East and Central Asia countries, for the Caribbean countries, for the Latin American countries); and,

g) studies and surveys on relevant policy and institutional issues, (regional forestry policy studies, trends of forestry law in the Americas, Asia, Africa and Europe, governance of concessions, privatisation trends, cross-sectoral linkages between public policies relevant to forestry development and conservation)

requested FAO to lay more emphasis on assisting countries in policy implementation, monitoring and evaluation and with associated institutional strengthening efforts (para. 24). FAO has continued to emphasise policy implementation, monitoring and evaluation, with institution strengthening. Examples include: training course on formulation of forest policies for Caribbean Countries (Grenada, November 1999); expert meeting on forest policies for South America (Santiago, April 2000); training course on formulation of forest policies in partnership, organized with the UN Peace University (Costa Rica, March 2000).
requested FAO's increased support for related capacity building and technology transfer, implementation of criteria and indicators, monitoring of progress and support to regional processes, and continued assistance in the implementation of nfps, which are seen as closely linked to monitoring and evaluation efforts (para. 25). Criteria and indicators, see comments re para. 13 above.

Technical backstopping was provided to 26 nfps of Latin America and the Caribbean, 9 in Asia and 15 in Africa.

requested FAO to maintain its neutral position and indicated that FAO's appropriate roles were in monitoring developments, identifying opportunities and constraints posed by certification, and providing policy advice as requested (para. 30). FAO hosted in February 2001 a workshop on multilateral recognition of certification schemes, organized jointly with ITTO and GTZ.
requested that FAO support workshops on trade-related aspects and on planning, monitoring, evaluation and legislation for sustainable management of all types of forests (para. 32). The Forestry department was actively involved in FAO Training Workshops on the Uruguay Round and Future Multilateral Trade Negotiations in Agriculture, and in a series of workshops on forest certification. FAO also held a workshop on multilateral recognition of different certification schemes
(iv) Review of FAO's programmes in the forestry sector, including follow-up to the requests and recommendations of the Fourteenth Session of the Committee

The Committee:

  
recommended that, for future sessions, information on programmes clearly show activities and achievements, and detail sources of funding and main collaborators, and requested that documentation include qualitative information and analysis on the impact of decentralization and on progress in gender mainstreaming It endorsed increased programme efficiency and balancing of normative and field activities and advocated the allocation of adequate resources for the programme (paras. 34 and 35). An attempt has been made clearly to show activities and achievements for different programmes in the text of this note, supplemented by the full text of the Programme Implementation Report for 1998-99 as it relates to forestry.

A report on decentralization was presented to FAO Council in June 1999 and gender mainstreaming was discussed in the 30th Session of the FAO Conference in November 1999. A note on efficiency savings was included in the PWB2000-2001 (paras. 93-101)

See response to para. 15 on the allocation of resources to support the programmes in forestry.

requested that additional efforts be made in institutional strengthening and country capacity building through extension, training, education and research; provision, within the terms of its mandate, of timely response to environmental disasters; technical and institutional support and training for countries emerging from social and political crises; coordination between FAO Headquarters and its Regional and Sub-Regional Offices; and making available FAO documents and publications in all five official FAO languages (para. 37). FAO has made additional efforts to support the establishment and strengthening of regional forestry research networks (APAFRI and FORNESSA), to improve capacities at national and regional levels. Case studies undertaken in a number of countries in view of the preparation of guidelines for forestry curriculum revision in order to better address the changing needs in the sector. Specific assistance given to member countries (Malawi, Slovenia), through TCP projects, to build capacities of national forest services in participatory management approach and methods.

Efforts in country capacity building have been increased notably within the framework of the forest resources assessment programme.

An expert meeting on forest fire management and control was organized in March 2001, in response to country based request and in follow-up to a consultancy to address needs, with special reference to networking among institutions and promotion of assistance and support between countries to counter emergency situations.

A concerted effort has been made to produce documents, publications and information on the website in all five FAO languages.

requested that decisive efforts be made in support to efforts which many countries were making to address problems in arid and semi-arid areas and countries with low forest cover, including combating desertification and mitigating drought through vegetation management, reforestation, afforestation and soil management; wildlife management in forest areas; and analysis of the role of protected areas in sustainable forest management (para. 38). In forest genetic resources major efforts were made to assist countries in the collection, exchange, field evaluation and utilization of genetic materials of arid and semi-arid zone multipurpose woody species with a view to promoting and facilitating the use of physiologically and genetically optimal planting materials. The interrelationships between protected areas, forest genetic resource conservation and sustainable forest management was reviewed and analysed in a number of technical papers and documents, including an input into the SBSTTA for COP-6 of the Convention of Biological Diversity. A map of protected areas was prepared within the framework of FRA2000.

FAO has supported the Secretariat of the Tehran Process, established as a follow-up to the recommendations of the expert meeting on the special needs and requirements of developing countries with low forest cover (LFCCs), organized by the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran in 1999. Support has been given in the formulation of a strategy to address the specific needs of LFCCs, design appropriate national forest programmes (in co-ordination with the CCD NAPs, the NAPE, etc), and establish adapted funding mechanisms for the implementation of these activities.

Wildlife management and protected areas:

In Harare, Zimbabwe during October 1999 an International Technical Consultation organised by FAO addressed the issue of how to reconcile the requirements of protected area management with the needs of sustainable rural development. In Lusaka, Zambia during March 2000, the Working Party on the Management of Wildlife and Protected Areas of the African Forestry and Wildlife Commission held an in-session workshop on management effectiveness in protected areas and conceptualized the prerequisites for effective management.

Direct support was provided to low forest cover countries in Africa and the Near East Region on wildlife management. An overview on forest protected areas was prepared for SOFO 2001

(v) FAO Strategic Framework (2000-2015) and implications for the medium-term for forestry programmes

The Committee:

  
commended FAO on the improvements made to the FAO Strategic Framework and, in suggesting that Version 3.0 should be more concise, in order to focus on strategic issues and better serve its purpose as the framework for FAO's action over a 15-year time horizon, requested that an Executive Summary be added to the document (para. 40); The FAO Strategic Framework was reduced in length and was published in all languages of the Organization in 1999, with an Introduction and Summary of the main strategies. A Summary version of the Strategic Framework was published in early 2000.
welcomed the information provided both in the body of the document and in Annex III on cooperation and partnerships and alliances, but requested that Version 3.0 clarify how these partnerships would be implemented (para. 43); The final version of the Strategic Framework includes more details on the implementation of partnerships under each of the Corporate Strategies.
agreed that FAO was a centre of excellence in forestry and that forestry was one of the areas of comparative advantage for FAO, and recommended that forestry be given greater prominence in the Strategic Framework (para. 45). The final version of the Strategic Framework is structured to address the inter-discip;linary strategic objectives and hence does not give prominence to any particular FAO programme, but the necessary references have been made to the forestry sector where appropriate.
noted that the plan was ambitious, that some of the medium-term objectives could be combined, and requested that the Forestry Department look at its comparative advantages and that quantifiable objectives and indicators of progress be developed to allow monitoring and evaluation (para. 47). Some of the medium-term objectives of the FAO Strategic Plan for Forestry were combined in developing the six priorities for forestry of the Medium Term Plan. Indicators of success have been included for each of the technical projects of the MTP.
agreed that FAO had comparative advantages in the fields of data collection, analysis and dissemination, technical advice on sustainable forest management, capacity building and national forest programmes, and requested that more attention be given to afforestation and reforestation in countries with low forest cover or subject to desertification; sustainable wildlife management; and Small Island Developing States (para. 49); High priority has been given at Departmental level to the implementation of the forest resources assessment programme, including plantation forestry; and to sustainable forest management. The Department has been actively collaborating in overall Organizational work on SIDS. See response on para. 12 re LFCC
recognized the importance of FAO as a major contributor to international processes related to its mandate in the forestry sector, requested that its role be clarified in the Strategic Plan and recommended that FAO increase the allocation of resources to the Forestry Department in order to implement this Strategic Plan (paras. 50 and 51). The role of FAO as a major contributor to international processes in forestry was clarified in the Strategic Plan, including identifying it as one of the four priority "clusters"
(vi) Recommendations of the Regional Forestry Commissions and of other FAO Statutory Bodies in forestry of interest to the Committee

The Committee:

  
recommended that FAO take necessary steps to implement the recommendations of the Regional Forestry Commissions and other FAO Statutory Bodies, and requested FAO to examine the various recommendations of the Commissions and prioritize them in line with its priorities in the FAO Strategic Framework. It noted the success of FAO and member countries in strengthening the Regional Forestry Commissions and recommended continued efforts to increase their activities and relevance (paras. 53 and 54). FAO has taken steps to implement the recommendations of the Regional Forestry Commissions, linked them to the priorities of the FAO Strategic Framework and incorporated them in the Strategic Plan. All FAO Regional Offices have given priority to the implementation of recommendations e.g. the office for Latin America and the Caribbean acted particularly through the four Subregional Groups (Caribbean, Central America and Mexico, Amazon, and the Southern Cone countries).