Feedback from REDD+ countries is pointing towards a desire to learn more from what others are doing, especially in terms of what has worked or not worked. In this month's newsletter, we feature what I consider to be a very important example of exactly the kind of cross-regional learning and exchanging that countries are yearning for and that can be a catalyst for moving the REDD+ concept forward.
In our lead article, "UN-REDD Countries from Asia Pacific and Latin America Meet in Unique Cross-Regional REDD+ Exchange", we read about Viet Nam's recent knowledge-sharing visits to Ecuador and Mexico, in collaboration with the UN-REDD Programme. Both of these visits resulted in valuable learning that all three countries will use to advance their national REDD+ efforts, specifically in the area of benefit distribution for REDD+.
As countries look to scale up their REDD+ activities, these face-to-face, south-south exchanges will play a central role in the advancement of REDD+. Reports and articles on progress, while valuable and necessary, can only teach us so much. Being together on the ground, in each other's forests—that's where the most effective learning can happen. These exchanges are allowing countries to avoid re-inventing the wheel, in order to parlay lessons learned into more informed decisions that have the potential to maximize limited resources.
There's another important lesson to take from Viet Nam's exchanges with Mexico and Ecuador. Rather than coming together to discuss REDD+ in general terms, they chose to focus their discussions on benefit distribution. This is key; the more strategic and targeted these exchanges are, the more beneficial I think they will be for all parties involved.
So I extend my congratulations to our three partner countries—Viet Nam, Ecuador and Mexico—for continuing to move their REDD+ efforts forward in such a constructive and meaningful way. The UN-REDD Programme looks forward to supporting more of these exchanges in the months and years to come.
Head of the UN-REDD Programme Secretariat