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Sustainable Forest Trade in the Lower Mekong Region

About the Programme

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The State of Forest Trade in the Lower Mekong Region


By 2050, the gap between global supply and demand of wood products will have increased significantly, estimates say, pushing source areas to extract more wood. This will only add more pressure on already scarce and degraded forest resources.

Across Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam, surging global and regional demand for timber, forest products, and agricultural products are mounting the pressure on forests and land resources in the region.

The UN-REDD Programme supports countries in the Lower Mekong Basin and China to strengthen their forest governance, and to ensure that trading of wood products is legal and sustainable. 

8 Focus Areas


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Regional Trends

Lower Mekong in transition: unpacking the trends of forest trade

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Finance

Banking on sustainable timber: what role do banks play? 

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Communications Campaigns

Do people care about forest crime?

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SMALLHOLDERS and MSMEs

Making timber trade equitable and sustainable

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Endangered Species

Protect & verify: Legally trading CITES-listed trees species 

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Forest Monitoring

Better data for better decisions

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Forest Certification

Why certify? A closer look into voluntary forest certification

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Social & Environmental Monitoring

Navigating data and information systems

Programme Outcomes


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Finding Solutions
 


Fighting illegal logging and trade calls for effective governance systems. They will not only improve law enforcement, but also support transparent tracking and proof of legal and sustainable timber production, processing, and trade.

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Tracking Wood Products
 


Wood-exporting countries and businesses relying on forest wood products increasingly recognize that their supply chains must use only legal and/or sustainable sources of wood. Key importing countries now ask for proof of legality and/or sustainability. This means that wood export hubs depend more and more on meeting higher standards of legal and sustainable forest use.

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Promoting Responsible Investments


Investing in wood-related products and industries must abide by the law and support sustainable trade. Understanding regional trade and investments in raw wood and forest products, as well as regional cooperation are critical to turning around illegal forest exploitation and to boost financial support for sustainable projects.

Learn about how our initiative works

Across the Lower Mekong Basin and China, the surging demand for timber is putting pressure on forests. The UN-REDD Lower Mekong initiative helps strengthen forest governance, and ensure that trading of wood products is legal and sustainable.

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Our Partners

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National Governments

Forest Administrations, Ministries of Agriculture and Environment, Ministries of Planning, and others. The programme will promote dialogue, coordinated policies, and boost dialogue and cooperation between LMR countries and China.

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Private and public companies

All companies along wood products supply chains, from harvesting all the way to processing and sellers, plus actors in the finance sector. Forest related companies will be critical to ultimately drive the change needed.

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Forest-dependent communities

Improvements in forest governance will lead to more secure, transparent, and consistent tenure and use rights, and will also provide opportunities for local communities to engage in forest product value chains for livelihood improvement. The project partners with RECOFTC (The Centre for People and Forests) at regional level.

Project results

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Stronger regional cooperation supports legal, sustainable forest-products trade across the Lower Mekong Region and China

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Improved forest governance ensures legal and sustainable production of forest related products.

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Improved monitoring of forest and land use due to better data accessibility and management