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Forest Law and Governance (FLEGT)

Fern works with partners to improve forest governance and strengthen tenure rights of local communities by using the EU FLEGT process, which also aims to control the import of illegal timber in the EU.

Fern’s analysis: Around half of the tropical timber and 20 per cent of timber from boreal forests imported into the EU is illegally sourced. Illegal logging destroys forests and damages communities, but it is hard to tackle because it is often an integral part of a nation’s economy, giving financial support to political parties and companies. Fern believes the challenge is to address the root causes of illegal operations: corruption, unclear tenure situation and the excessive influence of the timber industry.

Fern's monthly newsletter Forest Watch also includes regular updates. Partners in country provide regular updates of the process in their country on the website: www.loggingoff.info. To sign-up to Forest Watch, please click here.

To learn more about FLEGT see this seven minute animation which explains all of the issues:

This short film introduces you to some key people involved in VPA processes:

To find out about Fern's FLEGT related projects visit the EU Map of FLEGT projects, by clicking on the link below:

Most recent publications

Forest Watch VPA Update June 2017: The future of FLEGT, what will the EU prioritise?

LoggingOff and Fern publish occasional Forest Watch updates detailing events in countries negotiating a Voluntary Partnership Agreement from a civil society perspective.

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PDF iconVPAs update FW2017_final.pdf269.94 KB

How much do communities get from logging? Social obligations in the logging sector in Cameroon, Ghana, Liberia and Republic of Congo

This study looks at the benefits gained by local communities from the logging industry in Cameroon, Ghana, Liberia and the Republic of Congo and was carried out with support from and on request of local NGOs in these countries.

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PDF iconfern how much.pdf2.41 MB
PDF iconHow much summary.pdf1.93 MB

NGO letter to Commission re: responsive, inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making

This letter from eight environmental NGOs asks the European Commission to ensure that all participants of their conference 'Tackling illegal logging and deforestation: progress made and opportunities for future action' have the necessary materials to contribute effectively.

Mexican community forest constitution

This is a typical constitution for a community forest in Mexico.  It is the central document setting out how the community governs itself and its land and resources. It covers issues such as:

Making Voluntary Partnership Agreements (VPAs) work for forests, people and the climate: Civil society recommendations on the future of VPAs

As decision makers in the European Union (EU) and timber producing countries consider the future of the FLEGT Action Plan, and its Voluntary Partnership Agreements (VPA), civil society organisations and platforms from Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, Ghana, Guyana, Liberia, Honduras, Indonesia, Republic of the Congo, Vietnam, and Europe have issued Making VPAs work for forests, people and the climate a new briefing with recommendations for how to strengthen and upgrade the VPAs.

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PDF iconbriefing VPAs.pdf565.81 KB

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