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United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF) Organizational Meeting and Informal Consultations on the Multi-Year Programme of Work (MYPOW) of the UNFF

New York, 12-16 February 2001

United Nations Forum on Forests (UNFF) Organizational Meeting and Informal Consultations on the Multi-Year Programme of Work (MYPOW) of the UNFF  


Thursday, 15 February: Informal Consultations on the MYPOW


On the third day of the informal consultations, delegates heard an update on the on-going discussions on the Secretariat's location and discussed programme elements relating to: fostering a common understanding of sustainable forest management (SFM) and addressing forest policy issues and emerging areas; strengthening political commitment; and the review of the UNFF to be taken in five years. Bilateral discussions on the Secretariat's location and the tenure of Bureau members continued throughout the day. 



Monday, 12 Feb | Tuesday, 13 Feb  | Wednesday, 14 Feb | Thursday, 15 Feb | Friday, 16 Feb


Location of the Secretariat

A representative from the financial office of the Department of Social and Economic Affairs (DESA) presented the comparative analysis of options for the location of the UNFF Secretariat.  In questioning, the representative from DESA clarified that the host country pays additional costs of holding sessions away from UN Headquarters.

Nigeria noted, on behalf of the G-77/China, that the comparative analysis does not provide a full accounting of the costs associated with the various venues.  He also remarked that if no decision is taken at this meeting on the location of the secretariat, then its location will default to UN Headquarters.

Foster a Common Understanding of Forest Management and Address Forest Policy Issues and Emerging Areas

The US outlined guidelines for promoting sustainable forest management (SFM), and  the Society of American Foresters outlined their work in this area.

Pakiston drew attention to issues faced by Low Forest Cover Countries, including environmental degradation and desertification.

Brazil noted that SFM relies on capacity building in countries and indigenous groups.  She warned against taking on complex issues that are being addressed by other instruments.

New Zealand noted that criteria and indicators for SFM should be adapted to local conditions.

Strengthen Political Commitment

Gabon said political commitment should be based on analysis of the causes of forest degradation and mobilization of human, financial and technical resources.

In a debate on the timing of the first high-level segment Costa Rica and others opposed holding the meeting in 2002, citing the heavy schedule for that year.  Other countries supported holding ministerial meetings at that time, as it would allow for input into Rio+10. 

With respect to multi-stakeholder dialogues, Norway highlighted the roles of indigenous peoples and local communities, and emphasized the link between monitoring, assessment and reporting and implementation of the IPF/IFF proposals for action.

Vice-Chair Slamat Hidayat facilitated consultations, and summarized the discussion at the end of the meeting.

Review of the UNFF

Countries including Canada endorsed early development of criteria for review of the UNFF in five years.  There was agreement that delegates were unprepared to discuss this matter in full, and that lack of discussion was not a clear indicator of consensus.


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UNFF / MYPOW-related links


bulletUN Economic and Social Affairs UNFF 2001 Page

bulletLinkages Forests Page

bulletUN Economic and Social Affairs Forests Page

bulletENB Report on the Workshop on Financing Sustainable Forest Management

bulletOfficial Report on the Fourth Session of the IFF

bulletENB Report on the Fourth Session of the IFF

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