Kick-off meeting of the ATIBT certification commission


About fifteen participants met on 16 June 2020 for the first meeting of the ATIBT certification commission to discuss the functioning and the roadmap of this commission.

Finally! The first meeting of the certification commission with those who expressed interest was held on 16 June 2020. About fifteen different participants (producers, donors, professional associations, various experts, anthropologist, certification scheme managers and certification bodies) discussed for more than two hours on the functioning  and themes to be addressed by this commission.

After an introductory word from the Director of the ATIBT, Benoît JOBBE DUVAL, the participants explained their individual interest in participating in the work of this commission. Then the two co-presidents Nicolas PERTHUISOT and Sophie DIROU presented the objectives of this commission, which is intended to be a platform for information, discussion and reflection on topics related to certification.

Its objectives are as follows:

  • Monitor forest certification in the Congo Basin and diffuse relevant information in a transparent manner to ATIBT members, partners and stakeholders;
  • To answer the questions of the ATIBT members on the implementation of their certification process and to advise them;
  • To be involved in the consultation and decision-making processes of new standards and/or requirements of certification systems and to accompany the members in these changes;
  • Participate, as far as possible, in the various events related to forest certification;
  • Identify and monitor initiatives and processes that can be complementary or in resonance with forest certification (FLEGT, REDD+, PES, SDG, certification of other value chains, etc.) ;
  • To feed the reflections that can be carried out within the other ATIBT commissions (forest-industry, marketing and scientific)

These objectives and the functioning (a few meetings per year) of the certification commission have been validated through the regulation document. A draft roadmap was also discussed.

The animators of this commission, the co-presidents and the Secretary Caroline DUHESME, had, beforehand, thought about a declension of these objectives in activities and tasks. They were introduced to participants who had the opportunity to share activities that they themselves would like to see addressed by this commission. Thus, the creation and promotion of common language elements, the relationship with national competent authorities for the application of the EUTR and the certification of territory have been added to the draft roadmap.

Finally, in order to get straight to the heart of the debates, the discussions addressed various ongoing initiatives: the studies on certification by the Scientific and Technical Forest Council in relation to the National Strategy to Combat Imported Deforestation (SNDI) in France, particularly on territorial certification, the initiatives underway to feed into the debate on the possible links between FLEGT and private certification schemes, the study on the impacts of the application of the requirements relating to Intact Forest Landscapes (IFL). An update on the FSC National Schemes also recalled that the schemes of Congo, Gabon and Cameroon are currently being analysed by the FSC. It was recalled that the second public consultation on the PAFC regional standards will end before the end of June.

Now we have to keep this commission alive. It is a challenge that the Co-Chairs and Secretary hope to have passed on to the participants.

For more information, please contact Caroline Duhesme