04/2021 – 12/2022
Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO)
- Nature & Development Foundation (NDF)
- Liberia Timber Association
- Liberia Chainsaw and Timber Dealers Union
Commercial logging is a significant part of the economies of Ghana and Liberia. The introduction of the FLEGT/VPA program in Ghana and Liberia has revealed serious capacity challenges in the industry. Significant number of the logging and trading operations fall short of legality requirements. In Ghana the SMFEs are important in the VPA-FLEGT process because many of the large volume exporters recorded by trade statistics do not own concessions or even processing mills: they just buy the finished products from these small companies, aggregate them and export. However, many Small and Medium Forest Enterprises (SMFEs) have not been able to install the systems and provide the technical know-how needed to apply forestry rules and regulations meant for the legal functioning of the forestry sector. Additionally, the lack of regulatory and voluntary systems to discriminate against illegal timber remains a huge challenge in Ghana.
In a bid to build the capacities of these SMFEs to comply with FLEGT requirements and funded by the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) of the UK Government, Nature and Development Foundation (NDF) implemented the project, “Building the Capacities of Small and Medium Forest Enterprises in Ghana and Liberia to Supply and Trade in Legal Timber” – Phase I. Significant gains were made through implementation of the project including;
- Generation of momentum for implementation of the public procurement policy on timber and timber products through series of engagements with key stakeholders such as the Public Procurement Authority (PPA), the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources (MLNR) and the Forestry Commission (FC). These institutions are motivated and ready to seize the opportunity for easier implementation of the policy.
- Increased knowledge and use of ‘lesser used timber species’; – members of the Ghana Chamber of Construction Industries (GhCCI) have access to legal timber and also understand the usability of lesser used timber species which can serve as substitute for the popular known species which are currently not available in sufficient quantities.
- Promotion of legal timber trade on the domestic market of Ghana; – Development of a virtual “legal timber market” App that host suppliers of legal timber with contact details and products as a way to facilitate legal timber trade between individuals and private sector entities interested in purchasing legal timber. Enhancement of the platform is a focus for this extension.
- Enhancement of Transparency; – creation of the industry portal to the Ghana wood tracking system greatly enhanced transparency in the implementation of FLEGT in Ghana. This extension seeks to train industry to use the portal to for their businesses.
Targeted at Small and Medium Timber Enterprises (SMFEs) in Ghana and Liberia, this project, “Building the Capacities of Small and Medium Forest Enterprises in Ghana and Liberia to Supply and Trade in Legal Timber”-Phase II, seeks to consolidate efforts on building the capacity of timber companies to be able to comply with FLEGT requirements.
Given the importance of gender in the sector, project activities are designed not only to be gender-sensitive but also gender-responsive. Dedicated activities to give voice to women in the sector will also be implemented.
In Liberia, with respect to Liberia Timber Association (LibTA) and Liberia Chainsaw and Timber Dealers Union (LICSATDUN), a lot remains to be done particularly on association management, membership capacity, fund raising and financial management. There is the high desire for LibTA to engage further with LICSATDUN to spearhead the development of the chainsaw code of forest harvesting practices and generally improve timber industry front in Liberia and this extension seeks to support the processes. Persons dressing timber with chainsaw
Expected Outcome and Impact
- Timber companies and individuals that are involved in timber harvesting as businesses log in a responsible manner that supports the sustenance of the forest.
- Procurement of legal timber for public works has been mainstreamed into local government procedures and all local assemblies in Ghana are enforcing timber procurement guidelines.
Specifically, it is anticipated that;
- By December 2022, 100 additional companies will have knowledge and capacity to comply GhLAS/WTS requirements.
- By December 2022, 100 timber companies have ability to use, and are using the timber industry portal to the Ghana Wood Tracking system; Use of timber industry portal is integrated in processes and is utilized in all engagement by the private sector with the forestry commission.
- By December 2022, the voices of women in the timber business In Ghana is strengthen through the formation of women in timber group in Ghana.
- By December 2022, the requirement to use legal timber in public funded works is mainstreamed into public procurement documents of the Public Procurement Authority of Ghana.
- By December 2022, there is a functional mobile legal timber App with at least 200 venders.
- By December 2022, information on the properties of Lesser Used Species (LUS) are available to relevant stakeholders and demand for these timber species have increased.
- By December 2022, LibTA secretariat will improve in capacity to engage for effective nation building, corporate governance and financial management while members of the association will have capacity to amicably resolve grievance and disputes with communities in which they operate.
- By December, 2022, Executives of LibTA will have knowledge on the modalities to self-regulate their members.
- By December 2022, LICSATDUN secretariat will have capacity in financial reporting and management. The executives of the association will appreciate the concept of Gender. The members of the association will have knowledge on efficient usage of chainsaw.