The Ministry of Water and Forests of Gabon is recruiting a consultant to carry out a review and analysis of the development and management plans of operating forest concessions

Applicants should send an email by May 10, 2021 to :

@Edouard Coenraets

The Gabonese government's declaration requiring FSC certification for all forest concessionaires operating in Gabon is an opportunity to improve sustainable forest management in the country. This will require a substantial effort from forest operators to improve their practices, as well as the forest administration to govern the process in an open and transparent way, by implementing a roadmap to achieve this ambitious goal as soon as possible.

To progressively improve its capacity to manage the forest sector, the Ministry of Water and Forests (MINEF) is conducting a general audit of the governance documents of forest concessions to take appropriate measures to implement Gabon's roadmap towards the generalization of the certification of forest concessions.

One of the MINEF's short-term objectives is to measure the current performance of forest managers in terms of documentary compliance. It is within this framework that certain measures have been taken by the MINEF, including requiring all concessionaires to provide, by January 2021, updated documentation on the management documents and reports of their companies. The aim is to build a physical and digital database for the traceability of information.

To achieve the government's objective of certifying all of the country's forest concessions and to better support forest concessionaires in their commitment to the forest certification process, it is crucial to carry out an inventory of the conformity of management documents (management plans), to identify their strengths and weaknesses related to the laws and regulations in force on the one hand, and certification requirements on the other.

The MINEF has completed the first stage of this inventory by collecting documentation related to the development and management of operating forest concessions. The documentation collected -which is currently being classified- includes the legal texts for the attribution of permits, development plans (PA), management plans (PG), annual operation plans (PAO), as well as a reliable map of the forest concessions.

To carry out the next step in this process, the MINEF, with the support of FSC Congo Basin, is looking for a consultant to conduct a review and analysis of this documentation to determine compliance, strengths and weaknesses, and needs for quality improvement of management plans, to help the concessions concerned better meet the requirements of generalized forest certification, as desired by the Government. This is an essential step towards the development and launch, by mid-2021, of Gabon's roadmap towards the generalization of forest certification to all production forests.

The consultant will be a technical support by supervising and facilitating the work of a team of the MINEF experts implemented to review forest management documents and assess their compliance using an analysis grid and a work procedure to be proposed.

The terms of reference related to the recruitment of this consultant are available here (in French).