ASEAN meet promotes social forestry

THE 13th Meeting of the ASEAN Working Group on Social Forestry (13th AWG-SF), which opened at the Wafa Hotel and Apartment in Gadong yesterday discussed promoting policy and practices of social forestry; establishing and strengthening AWG-SF information and communication systems; plan of action for ASEAN Cooperation in Social Forestry (2016-2020); promoting and developing support for AWG-SF and also updates from the ASEAN member states on Social Forestry as well as presentations from meeting partners.

Acting Director of Forestry Noralinda binti Haji Ibrahim officiated the opening ceremony of the meeting organised by the Forestry Department, Ministry of Primary Resources and Tourism.

From the meeting, it is hoped that ASEAN member countries will continue to strive hard in working together for a safer and more prosperous ASEAN Community taking into account a continued political support and commitment. These efforts are further strengthened through continued collaboration and partnership with dialogue and development partners.

ASEAN member state delegates – the Kingdom of Cambodia, Republic of Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Republic of the Union of Myanmar, Republic of the Philippines, Republic of Singapore, Thailand, Socialist Republic of Vietnam – ASEAN Secretariat, AWG-SF Secretariat and government officials of Brunei Darussalam attended the meeting.

The meeting partners – the Centre for People and Forest (RECOFTC); ASEAN-Swiss Partnership on Social Forestry and Climate Change (ASFCC); the World Agroforestry (ICRAF); Non-Timber Forest Product-Exchange Programme (NTFP-EP); Embassy of Sweden in Bangkok, Thailand; Southeast Asian Regional Centre for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) and Centre for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) – also attended the meeting.

The 13th AWG-SF Meeting is held yearly as a technical body under the ASEAN Senior Officials on Forestry (ASOF).

This year, Brunei Darussalam through alphabetical rotation, is the host country and chair for the 13th AWG-SF Meeting from July 2-3.