Fostering greater involvement of people in forestry

APFC recognizes the importance of forest governance ' the process of making and implementing decisions about forests and forest management ' and fostering greater involvment of people in forestry. APFC's work particularly focuses on poverty reduction, participtory forestry and multi-stakeholder processes in forestry decision making.

Poverty reduction

The proceedings of the International Conference on Managing Forests for Poverty Reduction: Capturing Opportunities in Forest Harvesting and Wood Processing for the Benefit of the Poor (organized as an APFC event in October 2006) were published in mid-2007 and issued at a book-launching event in September 2007.

FAO/APFC was a co-organizing partner of the RECOFTC-led International Conference on Poverty Reduction and Forests: Tenure, Market and Policy Reforms, 4-7 September, Bangkok, Thailand. The conference set an agenda to ensure that forest management is contributing to poverty alleviation, identify the role of forests, forest communities, enterprises and administration in advancing poverty alleviation and economic development, and strengthen existing and build new strategic networks of key stakeholders to advance tenure, market and policy reforms.

FAO/APFC collaborated with International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) in organizing the International Conference on Sustainable Forest Management and Poverty Alleviation: Roles of Traditional Forest-related Knowledge, 17-20 December 2007 in Kunming, China.

“Forest faces” initiative

APFC collaborated with the Asia Forest Network to capture perceptions of a wide range of individuals through a series of interviews and profiles about forests, conservation, utilization, and the future of forests through this initiative. A pilot publication focused on the Philippines was lauched during Asia-Pacific Forestry Week in Hanoi, Viet Nam, April 2008.

Community forestry

Building upon the success of the First Community Forestry Forum in 2005, RECOFTC and FAO organized the Second Community Forestry Forum, 21-22 March 2007, in Bangkok, Thailand. The theme for the forum was “governance mechanisms to address benefit flow and benefit sharing from community forestry/community-based forest management in Asia.” A synthesis of discussions from the workshop, Sharing the Wealth: Policy and Legal Frameworks to Support Equitable Sharing of Costs and Benefits from Community Forestry, has been distributed.

Multi-stakeholder processes

APFC has conducted a review of experiences in establishing and managing multi-stakeholder processes in forestry in the region. The review was completed in October 2007 and published in January 2008.

National forest programmes (Nfps)

Nfps are supported through the National Forest Programme Facility (Facility), as well as the FAO-Netherlands Partnership Programme (FNPP) and FAO Regular Programme resources. Most of the Facility work is centered on studies to strengthen capacity in participatory and community forestry, updating national forest policies, and related areas. Facility-supported activities in China, Indonesia, Pakistan, Palau, the Philippines and the South Pacific countries are close to completion. Discussions are now ongoing to extend the work in China and the Philippines to cover new areas. Work in Vietnam has just taken off with the approval of two studies. The Facility Partnerships were recently launched in Lao PDR and Cambodia, and another is expected for Nepal during the year. FNPP-supported work on development of a National Forest Policy, draft legislation, and training in Community Forestry has been completed in Timor-Leste. Additional work on improving the organizational structure of the forest department to better support the new policies has also been completed. Through a new FAO/TCP assistance for Nepal’s leasehold forestry programme, work has begun on development of policies, institutional framework and operational guidelines that are aimed at enhancing forestry’s contribution to poverty reduction. : Nfps are supported through the National Forest Programme Facility (Facility), as well as the FAO-Netherlands Partnership Programme (FNPP) and FAO Regular Programme resources. Most of the Facility work is centered on studies to strengthen capacity in participatory and community forestry, updating national forest policies, and related areas. Facility-supported activities in China, Indonesia, Pakistan, Palau, the Philippines and the South Pacific countries are close to completion. Discussions are now ongoing to extend the work in China and the Philippines to cover new areas. Work in Vietnam has just taken off with the approval of two studies. The Facility Partnerships were recently launched in Lao PDR and Cambodia, and another is expected for Nepal during the year. FNPP-supported work on development of a National Forest Policy, draft legislation, and training in Community Forestry has been completed in Timor-Leste. Additional work on improving the organizational structure of the forest department to better support the new policies has also been completed. Through a new FAO/TCP assistance for Nepal’s leasehold forestry programme, work has begun on development of policies, institutional framework and operational guidelines that are aimed at enhancing forestry’s contribution to poverty reduction.