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Fourth Session of the United Nations Forum on Forests 
Geneva, Switzerland, 3- 14 May 2004

 Earth Negotiations Bulletin - ENB
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Friday, 14 May

The UNFF-4 finished its work today during a final plenary session. Resolutions were adopted on: social and cultural aspects of forests; forest-related scientific knowledge; monitoring, assessment and reporting and criteria and indicators; finance and transfer of environmentally sound technologies; and the review of the effectiveness of the international arrangement on forests.

The Palais des Nations complex, as depicted in a poster available at the UN bookstore. The UNFF-4 took place in the new building in the far upper right of the photo.

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Participants of the UNFF-4 at the last plenary session.


UNFF-4 Chair Yuriy Isakov gavelled the UNFF-4 to a close at 13:28.

Pekka Patosaari, Coordinator of the UNFF Secretariat.

Chair George Talbot (Guyana) presented the draft resolution on Finance and Transfer of Environmentally Sound Technologies (FINTEST).

Stephanie Caswells (US) presented the draft resolutions on Monitoring, Assessment and Reporting (MAR), Criteria & Indicators (C&I), and Ad-Hoc Expert Group (AHEG) MAR.

Ireland, on behalf of the EU and candidate countries Bulgaria, Romania and Turkey, called for the development of core future goals for the forest process and an international arrangement on forests.



Opening Statements:

Listen to:

  • Pekka Patosaari present on the preparation for the Ad Hoc Expert Group in September.
  • Pekka Patosaari: Report on the Strategic framework for the biennium 2006/2007.

Closing Statements

Pekka Patosaari, Head and Coordinator of the UNFF Secretariat, emphasized the high degree of trust and friendship that characterizes UNFF, and said that UNFF is the key international institution for comprehensive dialogue on forests. He also noted the important role of the CPF and said that the next year will be very important for UNFF.

Chair Isakov said that, despite the heavy agenda, the spirit of cooperation at UNFF-4 was remarkable and encouraged delegates to maintain this momentum over the coming year.

Presentations in Real Audio:

Immediately after the closure of UNFF-4, Chair Isakov declared open the first meeting of UNFF-5 for the purpose of electing its Bureau. The delegates elected by acclamation the following UNFF-5 Bureau members: Francis K. Butagira (Uganda), Adam Craciunescu (Romania), Manuel Rodriguez Becerra (Colombia), Denys Gauer (France). Bureau positions for UNFF-4 will decided on at a later date. Chair Isakov postponed election of the Asian Group Bureau member, and the meeting was suspended.

UNFF Secretary Moncef Khane presented the draft resolutions on Enhanced Cooperation on behalf of Chair Ngurah Swajaya.

Chair Xolisa Mabhongo (South Africa) presented the draft resolutions on Social and Cultural Aspects of Forests (SCAF) and Traditional Forest-Related Knowledge (TFRK).

Janice Coombs, New Zealand.

Mauricio Limon Aguirre, Mexico regretted neither reaching agreement on TFRK, needed for forests and peoples living in them, nor on cooperation, making it harder for countries to take action on the ground.

Qatar, on behalf of the G77/China, thanked the Secretariat and Bureau and welcomed further progress in the achievement of SFM.

Chair Isakov reminded participants who asked for the floor to be brief, since only 5 minutes remained before the close of the conference.

Indigenous Peoples representative lamented that her group's voices and input had been limited.

Franz Perrez, Switzerland said that the resolution on review and the attached questionnaire were a sign for the commitment to reforming UNFF.

The Russian Federation said he was confident that the positive trends that came to light at UNFF-4 would be continued at the next session.

Jan McAlpine, USA, welcomed rich dialogue on TFRK involving indigenous representatives as the real experts both in the MSD and as members of delegations.

Japanese Delegate Yuji Imaizumi.

Mark Fullerton and Ralph Roberts (Canada).

Pekka Patosaari, UNFF Coordinator and head, expressively thanked the members of the secretariat (above photo) for their hard work during the UNFF-4.

During the middle of the meeting, it was announced that the final report could be picked up from the document room at the back of the plenary hall.

Member of the Secretariat hands out the final report in the document room.

Above photo, left to right: Pekka Patosaari; Yuriy Isakovi and Moncef Khane reviewing the Enhanced Cooperation draft resolutions.

Above, center: Denys Guaer, elected UNFF-5 Bureau member.

Delgate from Portugal.

Simione Rokolaqa, Fiji.

Delegate from Sudan.

Above photo (left to right): Jorge Illueca, UNFF Secretariat, chatting with Radislov Dimitrov and Tamilla Gaynutdinova, ENB.

Members of the G77/ China.

UNFF-4 plenary panelists Pekka Patosaari, Yuriy Isakovi and Moncef Khane applauded the closing of the conference.


The Earth Negotiations Bulletin Team at UNFF (left to right): Nicole Shaubus (Austria); Rado Dimitrov (Bulgaria); Maria Gutierrez (Mexico); Andrew Baldwin (Canada); Leslie Paas (Canada); and Tamilla Gaynutdinova (Uzbekistan). This photo taken in front of the "Temple of Heaven" tapestry donated to the Palais des Nations by the government of China.

ENB's logistics coordinator Angeles Estrada (3rd from left, above), with members of the Argentinian Delegation.

Name that tree


Forestry experts, can you identify these trees growing around the Palais des Nations?

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