FAO and EU launch 15 million euro mission to spice up sustainability of Uganda’s forestry sector

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Kampala/Rome – The Meals and Agriculture Group of the United Nations (FAO) has launched a 15 million euro ($16.29 million) mission funded by the European Union (EU) to assist Uganda’s forestry sector contribute extra sustainably to the economic system and the atmosphere.

The five-year Sustainable Wooden-Based mostly Worth Chains in Uganda initiative, to be applied by FAO, goals to make sure the sustainable provide of authorized wooden uncooked materials from planted forests, improve the processing capability and market demand for wooden merchandise and enhance the provision of and entry to reasonably priced finance.

Forests in danger

The nation’s forests are more and more in danger from encroachment, deforestation, unlawful timber logging and forest degradation. Nearly one quarter of Uganda’s land was forest in 1990 however by 2017 that had almost halved to solely 13 %.

“The European Union takes delight in its ongoing dedication to considerably spend money on advancing Uganda’s industrial forestry business. By leveraging the collaborative efforts of the Staff Europe Forestry Partnership and offering supplementary funding for the processing and advertising of wooden merchandise, the EU is devoted to fostering the expansion of a sturdy and sustainable sector that thrives each environmentally and commercially,” mentioned EU Ambassador to Uganda, Jan Sadek,

The mission seeks to extend the standard and worth of planted forests by selling higher practices and extra environment friendly processing services, which, in flip, will add extra worth to uncooked wooden materials. That is important to incentivize the upkeep and enlargement of forest belongings whereas enhancing livelihoods.

“This initiative is all about unleashing the potential for Uganda’s forest sources to contribute extra sustainably to inclusive financial development, international efforts to deal with the local weather disaster and lack of biodiversity and to advertise ladies’s financial empowerment,” mentioned FAO Consultant in Uganda Antonio Querido. “We sit up for working with the EU, the Authorities of Uganda and our different companions to maneuver this necessary mission ahead,” he added.

Economies of scale

One other objective is to realize economies of scale by aggregating extra of the nation’s smallholder tree farmers and wooden processors.

Entry to reasonably priced finance for small and medium enterprises within the wooden sector is one other problem the initiative seeks to deal with, by way of measures resembling provision of monetary literacy, enterprise administration advisory help, and improved connections with the monetary sector.

As demand for wooden merchandise will increase domestically and regionally, it’s each economically and environmentally essential for Uganda to develop a sustainable wood-based worth chain which might assist the nation transition in the direction of a carbon-neutral economic system. A necessary requirement for that is combating the unlawful timber commerce. This causes substantial losses in tax revenues and together with continued reliance on charcoal for power in lots of city areas, contributing  to deforestation.

“The mission, which is a part of the broad motion beneath the EU-GOU Forest Partnership, is in keeping with the Nationwide Improvement Agenda for the forestry sector centered on enhancing worth addition to forestry sources, decreasing environmental degradation and the hostile results of local weather change in addition to enhancing utilization of pure sources for sustainable financial development and livelihood safety,” mentioned Alfred Okot Okidi, Everlasting Secretary, Ministry of Water and Surroundings. “The Ministry is happy with this collaboration and is absolutely dedicated to enjoying the coverage and regulatory, and technical coordination position needed for this programme,” he added.

Lowering stress on pure useful resource

If Uganda’s forest plantations are managed sustainably and environment-friendly, the stress on pure sources may be decreased and authorized and deforestation free financial development enabled.

Over the past 15 to twenty years, with help from the EU, FAO and different companions, substantial funding has been made into the forest sector, that means that the quantity of wooden produced is anticipated to develop considerably within the coming years.

Upgrading worth chains is essential if they’ll take in the anticipated provide, present extra employment and revenue, and proceed to incentivize sustainable practices relatively than unlawful logging.

FAO’s Forestry division oversees greater than 200  initiatives in 80 nations, and FAO is a lead companion for joint globl initiatives resembling the worldwide Sustainable Wooden for a Sustainable World (SW4SW).


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