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Report finds forest enterprises stifled by red tape, putting forests, incomes at risk
As a follow-up to our previous blog, here is another online article summarizing the findings of the last RRI/ITTO report.
RIO BRANCO, BRAZIL (16 July 2007)—A new study reports that community forest enterprises represent an invisible investment of US$2.5 billion in management and conservation in some of the planet’s richest forest habitats. This is more than governments in tropical regions spend directly on forest conservation. However, these enterprises are being side-lined in the international forestry arena, putting forests at risk the world over. The report was commissioned by the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO), an intergovernmental NGO based in Yokohama, Japan. The report was released today at a conference in the capital of Acre, one of eight states that comprise the Brazilian Amazon.
Employing more than 110 million people worldwide, such community forest enterprises harvest wood on a sustainable basis, and collect bamboo, rattan, fibers, nuts, resins, medicinal herbs, honey, wood for charcoal and other natural products to increase local wealth. At the same time, they are having an important impact on conservation of natural resources, according to the new report, “Community-based Forest Enterprises in Tropical Forest Countries: Status and Potential.”
“As the fastest growing segment of the global forest sector, community forest enterprises (CFEs) have the potential to lift millions of forest communities out of poverty,” said Andy White, Coordinator of the Rights and Resources Initiative, and a co-author of the report. “But only if they are given secure rights to forest resources and assistance with removing the red tape that impedes progress in almost every tropical region.”
The report concludes that the potential for growth of the CFE sector is “huge,” but will require government action to provide clear rights to forest resources for community enterprises, fewer burdensome taxes, greater flexibility in the way rules are applied, rapid approval of applications submitted to relevant agencies, and an end to indirect subsidies to large-scale producers. (...)
Read the entire article here.
You can find a copy of the report here.
Posted By Anne-Sophie Samjee at 9:06am on July 20, 2007
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