'VERIFOR' is a project of the Forest Policy and Environment Programme. The project is being implemented in association with three international partners: CIFOR Central Africa office (Africa), RECOFTC (Asia), and CATIE (C/S America). It has a value of €2.4 million over four years (2005-9), funded by European Union Tropical Forest Budget Line, and the Governments of the Netherlands and Germany.
VERIFOR is concerned with the policy, institutional and legal challenges around the issue of illegal logging. It seeks to help tropical producer countries verify that their timber has been legally harvested. In line with the EC's FLEGT Action Plan, the focus is on the provision of equitable solutions that do not have adverse effects on the poor, and which support the principles of good governance and hence relates to the accountability work of Rights in Action. It addresses the institutional dimensions, and the ways in which national ownership can be built up in a manner compatible with international credibility and legitimacy (rather than, say, technical aids such as methods of log tracking). A central preoccupation is the policy arena and policy challenges. Thus, it goes beyond the issue of criminality and will make a contribution to poverty reduction through national-led processes.
This meeting will introduce the new ODI book Legal Timber. It investigates a topical issue in international forest policy: how to verify the legality of traded timber in ways that will satisfy both the commercial interests of producer states and the social and...
This paper explores the challenges of this innovative environmental addition to trade policy, and considers implications for forest governance in Peru.
This book investigates a topical issue in international forest policy: how to verify the legality of traded timber in ways that will satisfy both the commercial interests of producer states and the social and environmental concerns of civil society and...
Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC): current situation with verification and forest control activities
This case study argues DRC’s forest verification system is reflective of other administrative institutions in the country, characterised by fragility as a result of decadence during the conflict period.
This VERIFOR case study explores the principles of verification practice in the forest sector in Gabon.
The effective introduction of an Independent Observer feeds prospects that it will enhance the verification dynamic in Congo’s forest sector; especially it will train a national civil society to take up forest verification in the medium term.
This case study discussion covers how to promote independence and ownership over the system; and the implications.
Ombudsmen, People’s Defenders and Mediators: Independence and administrative justice in state transformation
This paper examines the history and functioning of contrasting types of ombudsmen for the light that they can shed on forest verification.
This note examines trade across these countries, to help understand the different stages of legal verification to be found in each country.
Convergence between Certification and Verification in the drive to Legality Assurance: Assessing the Pros and Cons
"Much of the current debate around veriﬁ cation in the
forest sector emphasises the concept of ‘ownership’
as a pre-requisite for long-term sustainability of the
The European Union (EU) is seeking to control the provenance of timber and products entering the EU market, through its
Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Action Plan. Under FLEGT, Voluntary Partnership...
Will the verification of legal timber provide a way to address the severe governance problems that beset the forest sector while also securing the public interest and the livelihoods of the forest-dependent poor?
Covers both the direct impacts of the verification process itself and those indirect impacts arising from the use of the products of the verification process. To-date, there has been much less consideration of the developmental impacts of proposed...
This paper considers options for independent monitoring of the timber trade, as a component of verification systems. It presents various possibilities relating to verification design, and poses a series of questions regarding the timing of monitoring...
The case study compares the experience and impact of two contrasting examples of independent monitoring in the forest sector of Cambodia.
This paper explores the role, content and development of legality standards for verification in the forest sector.
This case study examines the role of the Forest Practices Board, an independent public watchdog in the forest sector of British Columbia.
Timber producer states are coming under increasing pressure to guarantee the legality of their production on international markets. The need to attest to the legality of traded goods demands a system to verify the authenticity of the claim, and it is...
The timber sector in Ghana is characterised by poor levels of governance. However, there is increasing demand for improved transparency and accountability within the sector, much of this led by an emerging national civil society concerned over forest use....
While the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) remains under the authority of the Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities, questions remain over its independence as a form of third-party oversight.
CITES is a multilateral environmental agreement aiming to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animal and plant species does not threaten their survival.
This paper explores lessons for verification in the timber trade in the light of the increasing pressure on timber producer states to guarantee the legality of their production on international markets. The need to attest to the legality of traded...
This Verifor Case Study present experiences of verification in various sectors to inform research in tropical forests.
The Kimberley Process Certification System (KPCS) for rough diamonds is an outcome of what came to be called the Kimberley Process, initiated in an effort to end the phenomenon of ‘conflict diamonds’, or ‘blood diamonds’.