Azerbaijan: Support to development of National Forest Programme and Forest legislation
A Technical Cooperation Programme (TCP) project, TCP/AZE/3303, to support the development of a national forest programme and legislation in Azerbaijan ran from July 2012 until December 2013. A proposal for a National Forest Programme was presented at a national multistakeholder workshop and comprised of a forest policy statement, strategies and action plans for their implementation. Proposals for the amendments to the Forest Code in line with the new policy priorities were also elaborated.
The main challenges of Azerbaijan forestry, identified in various national documents, include:
(i) degradation of forest resources and deforestation;
(ii) inadequacies in responding the needs and demands of the society for environmental, social and economic goods and services at the national as well as local levels;
(iii) inadequate stakeholders’ participation and intersectoral collaboration in the protection; restoration and sustainable use of forest areas and resources.
The project developed a new forest policy framework that will lay a basis for sustainable development and use of forests with an increased cross-sectoral importance of forestry and secured interests and rights of people living in the countryside whose welfare depends on the surrounding forests. The collaborative approaches introduced by the process are expected to pave the way for sustainable development and management of the country’s forests while contributing to rural development and poverty alleviation.
The project was implemented through a close collaboration between several FAO offices: FOE and LEGN from the HQ; Sub-regional office in Ankara and the FAO country office in Baku to support the key-stakeholders in Azerbaijan.