Forest genetic resources

The Second Report on the State of the World’s Forest Genetic Resources

The Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture included the second global assessment on forest genetic resources in its Multi-Year Programme of Work at the 16th Regular Session in 2017, to be considered at the 19th Regular Session in 2023. The Intergovernmental Technical Working Group on Forest Genetic Resources reviewed the outline and timeline of the second assessment at its Fifth Session in 2018 and recommended them for approval by the Commission. Furthermore, it recommended that the Commission request FAO to initiate the development of a new global information system on forest genetic resources, subject to the availability of extra-budgetary resources. The Working Group and the National Focal Points on forest genetic resources also provided comments to draft reporting guidelines.

At its 17th Regular Session in 2019, the Commission agreed with the recommendations of the Working Group and adopted the outline and timeline for the preparation of the second global assessment (available in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish), as well as the reporting guidelines. It encouraged countries to initiate the collection of data and information for the preparation of their country reports.

In June 2019, FAO invited countries, through a Circular State Letter (available in Arabic, English, French, Russian and Spanish) to update, as necessary, the nominations for National Focal Points on forest genetic resources by 31 August 2019 and to submit the country reports by 30 June 2020. Furthermore, FAO invited relevant regional networks and international organizations to submit reports on their contributions to the implementation of the Global Plan of Action by 30 June 2020. FAO also translated the guidelines for preparing the country reports and made them available (in Arabic, English, French, Russian and Spanish) to the National Focal Points.

The preparation of the second global assessment is currently underway. FAO will organize, in collaboration with the regional networks on forest genetic resources and international organizations, regional training workshops for the National Focal Points to support the preparation of the country reports. FAO will also brief all Regional Forestry Commission on the process in 2019 and the Committee on Forestry in June 2020. The Working Group will consider the progress made at its Sixth Session in May 2020 and the Commission will do the same at its 18th Regular Session in March 2021. FAO will present a draft of the second global assessment to the Working Group and the Commission in 2022 and 2023, respectively, for their consideration.