Sustainable investment in African forest resources highlighted at China-Africa event View Devel

Chinese and African stakeholders discussed how to protect Africa’s forest resources and ensure that Chinese investment generates benefits for local African economies at a meeting in Mozambique.

More than 90 Chinese and African stakeholders took part in a meeting on forestry governance in Pemba, Mozambique, from 23-25 October 2017. The meeting focused on ways to develop innovative pro-forest and pro-poor business initiatives in the context of Chinese investment in African natural resources.

The event was the fourth international meeting of the China-Africa Forest Governance Learning Platform since its launch in 2013. The learning platform aims to build bridges between African and Chinese stakeholders and strengthen governance of forests.

Delegates included representatives from African timber-exporting countries, Chinese officials, private sector businesses, and civil society organisations. Participants came from 10 countries: the Democratic Republic of Congo, Cameroon, Uganda, Tanzania, Madagascar, Zambia, Mozambique, China, the UK and the USA.

China’s imports of African timber and investments in land use in forest areas are both increasing, and China is now the top importer of timber from several African nations.

The China-Africa Forest Governance Learning Platform brings together forest governance stakeholders, including heads of government and forest departments from eight African countries, representatives from the Chinese Academy of Forestry, the Global Environmental Institute, IIED, WWF as well as other international organisations.

The first day of the meeting focused on understanding the work of Chinese businesses in Africa and looking at African policies relevant to Chinese investment and trade.

On the second day delegates visited a timber processing company and a local tree nursery, and day three focused on the way forward for shaping sustainable forestry and China-Africa partnerships.

The presentations from the meeting are available on IIED’s SlideShare platform, as follows:
Changes in China’s policy and actions on China-Africa forest products trade.

This bilingual English-Chinese presentation by Dr. Chen Yong of the Chinese Academy of Forestry provides an overview of the status of timber trade between Africa and China, China’s response to the the changing international environment in the timber trade and China’s policy and actions towards Africa.

Opportunities and challenges for Chinese timber businesses in the Congo Basin.

This presentation by Mr Ding Lei, a consultant to IIED’s China-Africa Forest Governance Project, provides an overview of the status of timber trade between the Congo Basin and China, and the opportunities and challenges of Chinese investment and trade from the perspective of Chinese operators in Africa.

My journey through Africa’s forests – Mr Fei Zheng, Mr Forest company.

This presentation by Mr Fei Zheng, owner and founder of Mr Forest in Mozambique, tells the story of Mr Zheng’s experience as a Chinese businessman in Africa, his first encounter with Mozambique, changes in his philosophy as a businessman, and gives an overview of his current sustainable investment projects and his proposed call for collaboration.

Insights of Chinese forestry investment in Zambia – opportunities and challenges.

This presentation by Ms Mercy Mupeta Kandulu, Zambia Forestry Department, gives an overview of timber and non-timber investment issues linked to China in Zambia and discusses some key lessons learned.

Zanzibar declaration on illegal trade in timber and other forest products: progress made
This presentation by Ms Miza Khamis, from the Zanzibar Department of Forestry, presents challenges related to trade in timber in Eastern Africa, early efforts to address illegality in timber trade between 2011 and 2015, inter-regional efforts from 2015 to date – including an overview of the the Zanzibar Declaration, an agreed regional action to tackle illegal trade in timber and other forest products by national forest agencies of Tanzania, Kenya, Mozambique, Uganda and Madagascar.

Mozambique-China cooperation on forest and timber trade issues, progress made.

This presentation in Portuguese by Mr Darlindo Pechisso of the National Directorate of Forests of Mozambique, provides an overview of the proposed memorandum of understanding for forest cooperation between the Mozambique Ministry of Land, Environment and Rural Development (MITADER) and the State Forest Administration of China.

NGOs work in Cameroon with companies exporting timber to China: lessons learned.

This presentation by Mr Norbert Sonne, from WWF in Cameroon, provides an overview of WWF and the Centre for Environment and Development’s work on providing technical support to forestry companies, and on building capacity of local NGOs and strengthening local communities. It also presents their work mapping Chinese investments and trade in the forestry sector in Cameroon.

Private sector view of the changes in Mozambique, on the legal regime for exploitation of natural resources, and in particular, the new measures applicable for the export of wood
This is a presentation in Portuguese by Mr Jorge Chacate, of the Mozambican Association of timber operations (AMOMA), on the legal framework for the exploitation of natural resources and new measures applicable to timber export.

Government view of forest sector changes in Mozambique.

This presentation by Mr Darlindo Pechisso, from National Directorate of Forests (DINAF), gives an overview of the Mozambican government’s efforts to restructure the forest sector since 2015: changes in legal framework, measures taken and key challenges.

Sustainable processing of wood in Uganda and the Chinese market: opportunities and challenges.

This presentation by Mr Harold Turinawe of Merit Sawmillers Contractors Ltd, and Mr Elvis Mulimba of E & P Investments Ltd, provides the perspective on sustainable timber processing from two Ugandan businesses. It gives an overview of the opportunities and challenges to sustainability of wood value addition and Chinese market competitiveness through quality and regulation for hard woods.

Forest Investment Programme support for the forest sector in Mozambique.

This presentation by Ms Celine Lim of the World Bank provides an overview of the Mozambican forest sector context and challenges, and highlights key facts about forest trade and sector reform. It presents the World Bank’s support to the sector via its integrated forests and landscape management portfolio, including the Mozambique Forest Investment Project (MozFIP).

China’s training aid for African forestry: progress, problems and prospects.

This presentation by Ms Jie Chen, of the Chinese Academy of Forestry provides an overview of China’s efforts in providing forestry linked training aid, the disparities between Chinese and African expectations and ways forward for China’s human resource development programs in the forestry sector in Africa.

Insights from China on sustainable processing – lessons learned from Treessun Flooring Co, Ltd.

This presentation by Ms Li Ming, of the Chinese Academy of Forestry, and Ms Mercy Mupeta Kandulu, from the Zambia Forestry Department, provides lessons learned from a study visit by African stakeholders to a Chinese timber processing company.

The event was hosted by the National Directorate of Forests of Mozambique (DINAF), Terra Firma, World Wildlife Fund and IIED.