On 3 September 2008, Ghana and the European Union (EU) initialled a Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA). The VPA is a trade agreement between Ghana and EU that seeks to regulate the trade in timber between the two. It also aims to promote good governance in the forestry sector and combat illegal logging and associated trades. It will achieve this by reforming the policy and legal framework by which the forest resource is managed — including promoting the rights of communities.
This briefing provides civil society views on the Agreement and its implementation from both Ghana and the EU and concludes that successful implementation is crucial for the credibility of the VPA process in Ghana, and the EU Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) process in general.