Promoting small-scale and community-based forest enterprises

With about $75 billion/year indicated as being produced in goods and services by the community-based forests, the management of these forests has received considerable attention in recent years. Opportunities to invest in these forestry projects are particularly attractive because of the sustainable land management environmental and developmental objectives they help to achieve. However, this sector currently doesn’t receive significant financing, except in some isolated cases. FAO addresses this challenge through its Community Based Enterprise Development (CBED) programme. The primary goal of this programme is to promote financial services and linkages among stakeholders and identify opportunities for investment in Small and Medium Forest Enterprises (SMEFs) for better business development and sustainability. Some of the CBED activities include:

• Facilitating training for enhanced market access and development.

• Supporting the establishment or reinforcement of Forest Producer Associations for SMEFs.

• Assisting in shaping an enabling policy environment for SMFEs.

• Promoting linkages across small and medium forest enterprises, markets, service providers, and policy processes.

Recent initiatives

Towards a strategy to promote the forest industry development in the Congo Basin

This initiative aims at promoting the opportunities of local investments in further wood processing to supply in particular national and sub regional markets. 

A meeting was organised in Yaoundé in September 2010 with the main stakeholders coming from the forest and timber industry and public administration, the international cooperation, NGOs, and research institutes. The main objectives of the meeting were to identify priorities for the formulation of national strategies in selected countries of the Congo Basin for the development of forest industries, from the resource base to the markets, and to agree upon a road map for the formulation and implementation of national strategies.
Flyer of the workshop  - Proceedings of the workshop with outputs of the working groups and the list of recommendations. - Video about the workshop

A meeting will be held on 22 and 23 March 2011 in the “Banque de Développement des États de l’Afrique Centrale” in Brazzaville. The objective of the meeting is to identify priorities for the formulation of national strategies, from the resource base to the markets, and to agree upon a road map for the formulation and implementation of national strategies.
Concept Note Brazzaville (in French) 
Click here to register
Recommendations in French: Communiqué final de la réunion 


Practical, Applicable and Sustainable Financial Mechanisms (PASFM) in Central Amercia

In 2010 the Asociación Coordinadora Indígena y Campesina de Agroforestería Comunitaria Centroamericana (ACICAFOC), FAO and the NFP Facility have launched a Practical, Applicable and Sustainable Financial Mechanisms (PASFM) regional initiative  in Central Amercia. Its objective is to learn from successful forest financing arrangements with the aim of replicating, developing and implementing PASFM. The target group of the initiative are the indigenous groups and small farmers who are working to strengthen community forestry and agroforestry models.


Identifying and developing sustainable financial mechanisms for small forest holders in West Africa

This joint initative FAO-NFP Facility-GFP aims at researching, documenting, analyzing and sharing successful experiences financing mechanisms for forest small holders in West Africa. The specific target groups are small scale holders and entreprises, farmers and communities. The ultimate goal is contributing to poverty reduction and increasing the social and environmental welfare of West African stakeholders through successful implementation of financial strategies that support smallholder activities and community forestry.


last updated:  Tuesday, March 29, 2011