Programme Paper

Senior Research Fellow, Energy, Environment and Resources
FSC sustainable logging being carried out in the natural forest around the Alpicam logging concession in the Kika region of Cameroon 7 June 2010. Photo by Brent Stirton/Getty Images.FSC sustainable logging being carried out in the natural forest around the Alpicam logging concession in the Kika region of Cameroon 7 June 2010. Photo by Brent Stirton/Getty Images.
Summary points:
  • The world’s forest sector has changed significantly in the last 10 years, with growing competition for forest lands and increasing restrictions on public finances. This has implications for moving forward with the EU’s FLEGT Voluntary Partnership Agreements.
     
  • Further effort is needed to integrate VPAs into other policy agendas, in particular that of climate change, and to coordinate with broader trade policy.
     
  • Given the shift towards more accountable and focused aid, better communication of the impact of VPAs is needed. 
     
  • Criteria on timber legality should be integral to all investment decisions, and an assessment of the existing barriers to achieving this is required.
     
  • A step-wise approach to VPAs should also be considered. This could help to provide more tangible evidence of progress, so helping to maintain political momentum for their implementation.