Delegates considered this programme element on 19 March. The Secretariat introduced the SG's report on Programme Element V (E/CN.17/IPF/1996/12), which provides a preliminary list of international organizations and instruments, summarizes work of the interagency task force on forests, and notes the Swiss/Peruvian initiative on work of international organizations, multilateral institutions and instruments in the forest sector. A more extensive document will be prepared for IPF-3.
Several delegations noted the importance of the Swiss/Peruvian Initiative and the need to analyze gaps and overlaps in work by international organizations. The G-77/CHINA said the next report should include: relevant institutions and programmes in SFM and forestry including resources available; a basis for evaluating programmes; and a description of relevant legal instruments. Assessment of this programme element must be carried out at the national level. The US said international organizations, institutions and convention secretariats should focus on forest activities where they have comparative advantage. CANADA highlighted coordination, efficiency and effectiveness of international forest-related institutions, especially governance and leadership. The document should consider: options to mobilize institutions' strengths; models in other sectors; new and innovative governance structures; and coordination of multilateral and bilateral resources. PAPUA NEW GUINEA called for an assessment of all UN organizations providing leadership in forestry and proposed that a comprehensive report be prepared for IPF-3. The NETHERLANDS said the World Commission on Forests could make a valuable contribution and that the IPF should identify organizations for implementation. WWF said while many supportive statements on knowledge and contribution of indigenous people have been made, the list of NGOs in the report contains no indigenous peoples' organizations. MEXICO said the increased attention to forests has led to competition among international organizations. The IPF presents an opportunity to scrutinize international institutions.
On the final day of IPF-2, delegates considered the Co-Chairs' draft summary. The text notes the points that should be taken into account in preparation for substantive discussion of this programme element at IPF-3 including: the framework of the analysis should be the Forest Principles, Agenda 21 and relevant decisions of the CSD; the importance of obtaining a clear view of the forest-related work of organizations, institutions and instruments; the clear mention of in-depth descriptions of activities carried out by these entities at different geographic levels, including an assessment of their comparative strengths and gaps, and of areas requiring enhancements; the inclusion of detailed descriptions of existing legal instruments and recommendations on their coordinated implementation; the institutional arrangements in other sectors as possible models for developing innovative approaches for adaptation to the forest sector; the options for ensuring enhanced coordination among bilateral and multilateral institutions; linkages and institutional relationships with other organizations such as those involved in research, as well as intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations; and the ways and means to effectively streamline their contribution to activities of the UN system.
The G-77/CHINA proposed adding a new paragraph noting the need to avoid duplication of work with FCCC, CCD and CBD. He also proposed: including descriptions of existing legal instruments "related to forestry"; finding ways to "affect", rather than "effectively streamline", the contributions of organizations involved in research; and specifying that organizations be "engaged in forestry activities." The US said the some elements were unclear and beyond the terms of reference for this programme element. He said the framework for analysis should include the IPF mandate and Chapter 11 of Agenda 21 (Combating Deforestation) and called for deletion of references to: the financial resources of international organizations involved in forest projects; options for re-organization of existing structures and governance of these institutions; future institutional arrangements; options for enhanced donor coordination among bilateral and multilateral institutions; and the linkages between international organizations and NGOs.
CANADA said that while some points may be outside the IPF's mandate, all matters will be considered in further detail at IPF-3. BRAZIL proposed deleting the paragraph on consideration of institutional arrangements in other sectors and development of innovative approaches for adaptation to the forest sector.
[Return to start of article]