The EU and Vietnam signed a Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT). The agreement will help improve forest governance, address illegal logging and promote trade in verified legal timber products from Vietnam to the EU, and other markets.
How can trade policies promote and support governance reforms in developing countries so that forest resources contribute to sustainable development? A panel discussion on the FLEGT initiative hoped to provide an answer to this question. The session, moderated by Jussi Viitanen, Head of the EU FLEGT and REDD Facilities at the European Forest Institute, took place at the recent WTO Public Forum in Geneva.
Nongovernmental organisation Fern says the EU’s new free trade deal with Japan threatens global efforts to tackle illegal logging, including its own action plan. The deal, which was agreed in July 2018 and is in the processing of being ratified, is the world’s largest bilateral trade agreement.
The Joint Implementation Committee overseeing the EU-Liberia Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) on forest law enforcement, governance and trade has met for the first time since Liberia’s new government — including new Forestry Development Authority (FDA) Managing Director C. Mike Doryen — took office earlier this year.
The EU and Honduras have concluded negotiations on a Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT). The agreement will help improve forest governance, address illegal logging and promote trade in verified legal timber products. The VPA is the first between the EU and any country in the Americas.
The European Union (EU) and Laos have held their second round of face-to-face negotiations on a Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT). The talks took place in the Lao capital Vientiane from 4-7 June 2018.
At the International Workshop on China-Africa Sustainable Forest Ecosystem Management, participants from Europe, China and Africa discussed synergies among green finance, China’s engagement in Africa, and Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT).
An article published in Front Page Africa describes the progress made by Liberia towards good forest governance since the end of the 14-year civil war, highlighting the ‘gradual rise’ of women’s participation in the forest sector. The writer outlines the benefits of greater participation of women in decision-making processes related to forests.
In a commentary published by Mongabay, ecologist Dan Nepstad underlines that without support to building strong institutions, ‘it may not be possible to further curb tropical deforestation.’ He writes: ‘governments control the biggest levers for influencing the decision that is made every year by millions of people who live in or work in tropical forests–to cut trees or not.’
Nearly five years have passed since the EU Timber Regulation (EUTR) came into force and things are looking quite different to how they did then. Authorities are increasing their enforcement activities all over Europe, a lot of new information and tools are available from all kinds of sources, and FLEGT-licensed timber is now available on the market.