A two-day National Workshop on “Validation of the Baseline Study and Discussion on Implementation of the Forest and Farm Facility in Nepal” is concluded. The workshop is jointly convened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED).
Building on the work of National Forest Programme (NFP) Facility and Growing Forest Partnership (GFP), a new global initiative called Forest and Farm Facility (FFF) has been launched recently by FAO, IUCN, IIED and the World Bank. Funded through multiple agencies and planned to be executed in some three dozen countries across the world, the FFF will initially be implemented in six pilot countries of Africa (The Gambia & Liberia), Asia (Myanmar & Nepal), and Latin America (Guatemala & Nicaragua).
The main objective of the workshop is to develop and agree on a modality for implementation of the Forest and Farm Facility (FFF) in Nepal which is acceptable to all the concerned stakeholders. The workshop is also focused to discuss and validate the Baseline Study, next steps for the implementation of FFF in Nepal and tentative pilot site selection.
Around 60 participants including high level representatives from different government agencies, national and international non-governmental organizations, academicians, private sectors, consultants and different concerned stakeholders passionately participated in the workshop.
Dr. Ganesh Raj Joshi, Secretary, Ministry of Forest and Soil Conservation chaired the inauguration session of the workshop. “The project is highly relevant and timely from Nepal’s perspective”, said secretary Dr. Joshi in his inaugural remarks. “There always remains some challenges while implementing programme with many stakeholders but I hope this workshop will contribute meaningful suggestions for good implementation modality”, he added.
Addressing the welcome speech, Dr. Yam Malla, Country Representative of IUCN Nepal emphasized on the objectives of the workshop and stressed on the need of partnership at the local level for the effective and efficient implementation of the programme. “It is a better time to implement FFF in Nepal because rapid social change is happening and number of policies related to forest, agriculture and natural resource management is under process of development”, he said.
Emphasizing on the role of the National Planning Commission (NPC), Joint Secretary at the NPC, Mr. Bhaba Krishna Bhattarai said, “The NPC is finalizing a three-year interim plan with a particular focus on the policies related to forest, agriculture, farms, nature, etc. It would be great to see the FFF contribute to achieve our policy goals.”
Addressing the ceremony, FAO Representative to Nepal Mr. Somsak Pipoppinyo said, “FAO fully support the consultation process and hope that this workshop will provide some guidelines for the implementation of FFF in Nepal”.
Highlighting the importance of the project, Ms. Grazia Piras, Representative of IIED said, “The workshop will find out the implementation mechanism which will be crucial to implement the activities at the ground level.”
The inauguration programme was followed by presentation and discussion sessions on Baseline Survey Report. In Nepal, an introductory meeting of the FFF was organised in February 2013 in which senior officials representing concerned government, non-government, civil society organizations as well as representatives of FAO, IIED, International Forest and Farm Family and Global Alliance for Community Forestry, participated. According to the recommendation of the workshop, the national level baseline study was issued in April and conducted during the month of May 2013.