Forest economics and finance

Financial and economic forces are major factors affecting the way that forests are managed. FAO's work on forest finance examines the way that forest policies and institutions can use these forces to improve forest management.



17 August 2016 Following the success of the first expert workshop held in Spain on risk mitigation and risk management to promote private sector investments in sustainable forestry, a regional workshop on this subject is being held in Santiago, Chile on 28-29 September 2016. The focus of this workshop is small rural producers, forest farmers, and community forests (including cooperatives and producers organizations). Among others, the key questions to be addressed include: how to enhance investment support for the above stakeholder groups and what kind of enabling environment is needed to do so effectively. For more details see the workshop information. [more]
24 February 2016 Private sector investment in sustainable forestry is growing, and is projected to increase further following the adoption of the Paris Agreement . This development will bring together investors, developing countries and local communities, many of whom will be unfamiliar with certain dynamics and potential challenges. Reducing all parties’ exposure to risks will be crucial, as a forthcoming workshop in Spain aims to show. Read more about the “Expert workshop on financial and institutional innovation for reducing the risks of private sector investment in sustainable forestry”, Solsona, Spain, 21–22 April 2016 in the workshop information note and about the overall initiative in the concept note. [more]

Why is forest finance important?
Many of the world's forests are still managed primarily for the commercial production of goods and services. Yet, increased awareness, international conventions and globalization of markets are highlighting the importance of sustainable forest management to achieve broader development goals. Forest finance is important as it affects the feasibility of shifting from unsustainable to sustainable practices, the distribution of costs and benefits amongst different stakeholders, and consideration of the non-market costs and benefits of forests. Furthermore, the financial and economic implications of managing forests in different ways are important factors that influence the implementation of sustainable forest management.


Work on forest finance at FAO
FAO works on the topic of forest finance at a number of levels. At the national level, FAO provides technical guidance, tools and analyses on a wide range of issues, such as: financing mechanisms; forest valuation; economic analysis of forest policies; trends in costs and prices; and forest revenue systems. At the local level, this work includes: development of innovative financing instruments; cost-benefit analysis of forestry projects and policies; training and guidelines for economic appraisal; and the valuation of non-market goods and services from forests. This work is implemented as part of FAO's regular programme of activities as well as through field projects at the regional and country level.

These webpages present the results of two recent projects:

  1. An assessment of the Latin America experience with financing mechanisms in support of sustainable forest management;
  2. An examination of fiscal policies within the context of sustainable forest management and the implementation of national forest programmes in Africa.

They also present some tools, models, other studies and relevant links on the subject of forest economics and finance that may assist countries in the financial and economic analysis of the forest sector and in the development of financing strategies.

last updated:  Thursday, December 21, 2017