CIDT’s Dr Aurelian Mbzibain and Daniela Baur attended the 18th Meeting of the Congo Basin Forest Partnership Parties on 27-28 November 2018 in Brussels, Belgium.
As a core leader of Forest governance in the Congo Basin region, Dr Aurelian Mbzibain, on behalf of CIDT, with World Resources Institute summarised key themes and initiatives that have taken place over the last year, and outlined priorities for the future.
Discussions and actions throughout the past year are organised into three priority areas recommended by participants at the previous meeting of the Parties in Douala:
- Integrated land management
- Timber markets and legality
- Participatory forestry.
Discussion on these priority themes continued throughout the year in a series of meetings including the Forest Legality Week in Washington DC, and the Forest Governance Forum in Brazzaville in October, among others. Key recommendations included calls:
- To implement the Brazzaville road map on participatory forestry;
- For cross sectoral coordination in land use planning and the use of earth observation tools for decision making
- For improving transparency and voice and strengthening forest legality and law enforcement
- For Congo Basin governments and development partners to integrate timber legality in public procurement contracts and as a way of gradual regulation of domestic timber markets.
View the communiqué (in French) presented to the CBFP Parties.
CBFP organising parties reported that ‘the Brussels meeting comes at a time when the Congo Basin forests are facing increasingly complex and serious challenges: The region is also making a major “shift” in its economic model which is currently geared towards diversification driven by investments in territorial development related sectors such as mining, the food and agricultural industry, infrastructure and other large scale projects, bolstered by a strong drive for medium term emergence which was virtually absent at the time of the launch of the CBFP. There is an urgent need to establish better linkages between sustainable forest management strategies, conservation approaches and the region’s economic development objectives which in turn requires better opportunities for dialogue and commitment around relevant issues, including cross-cutting issues and follow-up of shared viewpoints.’
The meeting convenes Heads of States, ministers and senior multilateral officials from around the world. It also attracts participants from international organisations, multilateral partners, civil society organisations and indigenous peoples, youth, women, media, academia, scientific community, private sector actors.
With participants close to 400, discussions were held on a variety of topics relating to conservation of biodiversity, wildlife, climate change adaption, sustainable management of the Congo Basin forests as well as local development of the communities residing in the Congo Basin.