This regional project assists five countries in the Congo Basin region to develop and implement a support system to promote the further development of processed timber into parquet floors, mouldings, furniture and other products to increase added value to timber and contribute to job creation. At the end of the project, the sector of further timber processing will be well known (by the number of processing plants, operational procedures, stakeholder needs, potential for forest industry sector growth) and its economic weight will be assessed from the identification of various stakeholders’ needs, the supporting structures and high level support.
At the opening ceremony of the workshop, “Towards a strategy to promote the forest industry development in the Congo Basin: challenges and perspectives of Gabon” held in June 2011 in Libreville, Gabon, the agreement for this project was signed in the presence of the Prime Minister of the Gabonese Republic, Mr. Paul Biyoghe Mba. The project launching meeting was also held in Libreville in October 2011. During the first year of implementation of the project, the Republic of Congo and Democratic Republic of Congo were integrated in project'activities. The PEA has agreed to recruit a regional project coordinator. Further analysis of project results will be done during a Project Steering Committee to be held in November 2012.
CFC coordinates activities with the Congo Basin Program (CBP), Dutch Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH). IDH aims to accelerate and upscale international sustainable trade of commodity markets. One of the core programs of IDH is to responsible production and trade of timber. The main objective of the Congo Basin Program is to get an additional 4 million ha of natural forest certified. The program is expected to be completed by December 2015. The total program CBP/IDH budget is 6 million EUR.