Japan and the European Commission join Norway in collectively pledging US$57 million in new funding for the UN-REDD Programme.
[23 March, 2011, DA LAT, VIET NAM] During its sixth Policy Board meeting 21-22 March 2011, the UN-REDD Programme approved US$4 million in funding for Ecuador's National Programme for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+), bringing the total amount of approved funding for UN-REDD National Programmes to US$55.4 million. In addition, a robust global package was endorsed, providing further support to countries’ action on REDD+.
These critical funds support the capacity of national governments to prepare and implement REDD+ strategies with the active involvement of all stakeholders, including Indigenous Peoples and other forest-dependent communities. The ultimate goal of these country-led REDD+ efforts is to contribute to the global fight against climate change. With this most recent funding allocation to Ecuador, the UN-REDD Programme is now providing direct support to 13 countries while also working with 16 other partner countries across Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America and the Caribbean (see list below).
"The financial and technical contribution of the UN-REDD Programme will allow Ecuador to match other sources of cooperation to finalize its REDD+ readiness phase. Significant readiness components, including effective stakeholder engagement, are key elements of the UN-REDD Programme for Ecuador. The implementation of REDD+ constitutes a clear contribution to one of the environmental goals set out in Ecuador's National Development Plan which is to reduce deforestation in the country," said Marco Chiu, Undersecretary of Climate Change for Ecuador’s Ministry of Environment.
The Policy Board was pleased to welcome Japan's first funding commitment to the Programme of US$3 million for the UN-REDD Global Programme, and a first-time funding pledge from the European Commission of approximately US$14 million (€10 million). Norway affirmed its continued support to the UN-REDD Programme, pledging at least US$40 million in new funding for 2011-2012.1
The UN-REDD Programme Policy Board's new co-chairs, Mr. Alexander Müller, Assistant Director-General of the Natural Resources Management and Environment Department (FAO) and Ms. Yetti Rusli, Senior Adviser to the Minister of Forestry on Environment and Climate Change, Indonesia, began the meeting with a statement expressing deep sympathy and condolences on behalf of the entire UN-REDD Programme for the government and people of Japan over the devastating earthquake and tsunamis that hit the country on 11 March. "We wish the Japanese people strength and courage as they deal with the loss of life and severe damage in their country," said Mr. Müller.
Other Policy Board highlights
At the start of the first day of the meeting, the Policy Board welcomed introductory comments from Viet Nam's Vice Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, H.E. Hua Duc Nhi, as well as the Chairman of the Provincial People’s Committee of Lam Dong Province, H.E. Huỳnh Đức Hoà, and the UNDP Country Director of Viet Nam, Ms. Setsuko Yamazaki. All three guest speakers underscored the important inroads Viet Nam has made in designing and implementing its REDD+ strategy. Also on the first day, the Policy Board endorsed the UN-REDD Global Programme's five-year framework document, which details specific technical and targeted support to countries to further strengthen their action on REDD+ design and implementation. During the second day of meetings, Nigeria presented progress in preparing its National REDD+ Programme, which the country will seek to present to the UN-REDD Programme Policy Board for funding approval at its next meeting. The seven UN-REDD Programme partner countries currently implementing their National Programmes (Bolivia, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Indonesia, Panama, Tanzania, Viet Nam and Zambia) engaged in an informative panel discussion, sharing progress and lessons learned to date.
The Policy Board meeting was attended by 122 participants from 24 countries, including representatives from the Programme’s partner countries, Indigenous Peoples representatives and civil society organizations. Representatives from donor countries-- Norway, Denmark, Spain and Japan-- as well as the European Commission were in attendance along with permanent observers from the Forest Carbon Partnership Facility, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Global Environment Facility, three Indigenous Peoples representatives and three civil society organization representatives from Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America and the Caribbean. Guest observers included representatives from Australia, the Bank Information Centre, Finland, Liberia, The Nature Conservancy, Uganda and the United Kingdom. The meeting was held at the Saigon Da Lat Hotel, in Da Lat, Viet Nam.
All documents and presentations from the 6th UN-REDD Programme Policy Board meeting are available on the Programme website. The seventh policy board meeting is expected to take place in October in Berlin.