Republic of Congo – Closing workshop of the FAO project « Structured participation of the Congolese private sector in the elaboration of the regulatory texts and technical documents of the FLEGT VPA »


On 13 December 2019, in the meeting room of the Ministry of Forest Economy, ATIBT presented the results of the 18 months of work of the project.

On 25/06/2018, the International Tropical Timber Technical Association (ITABT) obtained a funding agreement through the EU FAO FLEGT programme for the implementation of the project.

The closing workshop of the project brought together all stakeholders: the private sector, civil society, donors and government.

This exchange moment made it possible to present the results of the project but also to hold a round table discussion on the prospects of the FLEGT process in the Republic of Congo, the mobilization of the private sector and the role of ATIBT.

This project made it possible to mobilize the private sector around the following three regulatory texts:

  • Simplified layout plan
  • The Forest Code
  • Cancellation procedure and withdrawal of the certificate of legality

It also allowed ATIBT to keep the private sector regularly informed of events and discussions in Brazzaville that require the advice of forestry companies and to bring the private sector’s perspective in a sense to Joint Working Groups or other meetings with VPA stakeholders.

This project reinforced the idea of the need for private sector involvement in the different stages of implementation of the FLEGT VPA: without the private sector the VPA cannot exist.

This project also highlighted the need for private sector representation in Brazzaville that animates and structures business participation and centralizes private sector contributions. Indeed, although a number of companies have their headquarters in the capital, decision-makers and practitioners are scattered throughout the country and it is often difficult for them to travel to Brazzaville to attend stakeholder meetings. They often delegate counterparts affected by MEF in development plans to participate.

Through this project and FLEGT IP (EU and PPECF funding), ATIBT has been able to and will continue to facilitate the private sector in the implementation process of the FLEGT VPA in the Republic of Congo until next June.

The relevance of ATIBT Congo’s facilitation role has been supported by companies but also by the Ministry of Forest Economy, FAO and the EU. The year 2020 will be a pivotal year with the deployment of the SIVL, the adoption and drafting of the implementing texts of the forestry code. Forest companies will need to closely monitor the discussions and comply with the process requirements. For this they will need support and guidance.

ATIBT thanks all the workshop participants and the various project stakeholders who made the activities come alive during these 18 months of collaboration.

The content of this publication is the sole responsibility of ATIBT and can in no way be taken to reflect the position of FAO, the EU, DFID and SIDA