Recommendations AWG-SF

Seventh ASEAN Working Group on Social Forestry Conference

Social Forestry in Forest Landscape Restoration: Enabling Partnerships and Investments for Sustainable Development Goals


1. Enable multisectoral partnerships and stakeholder participation, including indigenous peoples, local communities and forest and farm producers, to develop cross-sectorial frameworks for planning, management and implementation of FLR

  • Establish a cross-sectoral mechanism to encourage and facilitate stakeholder participation in FLR programmes
    • Develop a coordination mechanism and use existing tools to explicitly evaluate trade-offs of co-existing objectives for optimizing production on the same land base, e.g. multi-component and multiple demand analysis of bioenergy, food and forest restoration
    • Ensure an accessible and effective community grievance mechanisms to be put in place in ASEAN members states
    • Strengthen regulatory and safeguard measures within specific sectors, e.g. contract or investment arrangements that balance ownership, reward and risk between landholders and investments
    • Adopt tools and processes that enable integrated cross-sectoral planning management and communication at all levels, to ensure local levels.
    • Enable cross-sectoral sharing of data and experiences to support analysis and planning
    • Build capacity within governments and communities to understand FLR approach and build negotiation skills with communities, companies and governments
  • Establish and strengthen ASEAN/AWG SF national platforms and committees in all AMS countries to ensure regular dialogue on rights and access of indigenous peoples, local communities and forest and farm producers.
  • Strengthen and enforce policies and laws that support and mainstream good practice initiatives undertaken by indigenous peoples, local communities and forest and farm producers in both protected and non-protected areas
  • Develop and implement agroforestry guidelines that integrate social forestry and FLR practices
  • Integrate SF and FLR practices and principles to ensure effective and equitable implementation
  • Ensure mechanisms or processes to enable communication, consultation and understanding at local, regional and national levels to implement national and international policies, with a priority focus on local settings and needs

B. Encouraging equitable and mutually beneficial investments for communities and governments

  • Operationalize the ASEAN Social Forestry Trust Fund to provide financial and technical support to indigenous peoples, local communities and forest and farm producers
  • Monitor development investments to ensure they abide by all existing laws. Develop an inclusive framework for sustainable investment and agree to use this as the basis for monitoring.

C. Supporting communities, economies and livelihoods (MSMEs)

  • Harmonize ASEAN policies on timber and forest products MSMEs
  • Assist CF-MSMEs to meet national/regional product requirements, identify products which can be competitive and marketed regionally, enhance value addition, increase bargaining power and achieve economies of scale
  • Develop a long-term collaborative programme with the ASEAN Coordinating Committee on Micro-Small and Medium Enterprises (ACCMSME) in order to mainstream Community Forestry Enterprises (CFEs) into ASEAN MSME programming
  • Protect the intellectual property rights of indigenous peoples over their traditional knowledge on forest products through empowering means
  • Provide access to credit for communities including a step by step (ladderized) Financial Literacy incubator program for Community Forestry Enterprises (CFEs)
  • Launch a strategic campaign on promoting and marketing community forestry products within nations and across the ASEAN region
  • Conduct national and regional policy dialogues, policy review mechanisms that reduce barriers to CFE viability
  • Develop and implement a socially and culturally appropriate capacity building and mentoring program on social entrepreneurship, particularly entrepreneurial leadership, including both soft skills and technical skills
  • Develop and support programmes, trainings, and initiatives at local, regional and national levels that support indigenous knowledge and skills; ROI-driven focused marketing strategy, nurture entrepreneurial leadership and capacity, and innovation.
    • Support the productivity and innovation of community forestry product clusters, especially those that build on Indigenous Knowledge Systems and Practices (IKSPs) and are anchored on sustainable production principles
  • Strengthen policies and mechanism/s for community forestry enterprises including but not limited to tax exemption for NTFP trade of indigenous peoples and local communities

D. Governance, tenure and institutional reforms

  • Recognize and put in place policies that establish and support co-management, indigenous peoples and local communities conserved areas and territories; and other proven management and governance arrangements in forested landscapes
  • Ensure customary tenure rights and access rights to forest and farmland including shifting cultivation areas, are secured, including those who are within protected and conservation areas
    • Ensuring processes for securing communal land titles are faster, streamlined and more efficient
  • Develop national guidelines on FPIC with the full and effective participation of indigenous peoples and local communities
  • Develop and implement national policies that take into account the UN Voluntary Guidelines on the Governance of Tenure (VGGT) and REDD+ Cancun safeguards.
  • Share, collate and emphasize the positive dimensions of tenure, governance and participation for all stakeholders, including the tangible benefits and incentives for communities, private sector and government, such as security, investments and finance.
  • In addition to strengthening tenure rights, outline the clear roles and responsibilities for partners to ensure participation can be effective
  • Enhance and enforce existing laws, including zoning, to strengthen community confidence and participant in local forest management

E. Research and development

  • Establish a fund for farmers and smallholders to participate in innovative and action-oriented research, including pilot trials, to make the best use of local knowledge
  • Develop a research assessment framework for community participation including innovative practices that can be demonstrated and scaled up
  • More action-oriented participatory research modes for site specificity, including case studies
  • Case studies into how enhanced regional integration and changing demand structures have affected land, small holder livelihoods and forests
  • Support more policy-oriented research as inputs for increasing inclusiveness and agency at the local level (for example understanding and managing trade-offs, how smallholders cope with and manage the different risks, and how they capitalize on the opportunities, resulting from AEC integration).
  • Manage policy synergies and trade-offs: Assessing how the AEC interacts with forest sustainability policies and mechanisms (e.g. PES, REDD+, FLEGT, forest certification standards) and cross-sectoral environmental policies (e.g. climate change and NDCs)
  • Enabling and ensuring sustainability and equity goals within different contexts: Examining AEC integration at multiple scales (subnational, national and regional) to situate location and sector specific issues within aggregate processes of change.
  • Derive lessons and assess the differentiated socioeconomic and ecological impacts in participating countries: Review the forest and agriculture policy architectures of existing models of economic integration (such as the North American Free Trade Agreement and the Common Agricultural Policy of the European Union).
  • Case studies into how enhanced regional integration and changing demand structures have affected land, smallholder livelihoods and forests.

F. Promote and support enabling conditions for successful FLR and related initiatives Program Design and Implementation including Enhanced Capacity Development, Skills, and Knowledge Exchange

  • Ensure the integration of Social Forestry and the application of Social Forestry lessons, principles and good practices in FLR program design and implementation;
  • Establish and operationalize national and sub-regional platforms and mechanisms for multi-stakeholder, cross-sectoral dialogue, consultation, planning, negotiation, conflict resolution and feedback on initiatives and issues relating to FLR planning, design and implementation;
  • Clarify tenure, agree on roles and responsibilities of stakeholders and partners in FLR, and negotiate and implement mutually beneficial, equitable benefit sharing arrangements;
  • Support and facilitate policy reform, research and technology development, skills and capacity building, and co-investments necessary for FLR implementation at scale.

G. Developing agroforestry guidelines for ASEAN

  • The guidelines should be developed under the auspices of the AWG-SF in collaboration with ASFCC Partners led by ICRAF, through an open, consultative multi-stakeholder process;
  • The guidelines should be voluntary, providing a broad framework and principles that AMS can adapt as appropriate to their national and local context;
  • The guidelines would build on scientific and local knowledge, lessons from case examples and pilot experiments, and would be updated to reflect new information and lessons over time;

Contents could include:

    • International, regional and national frameworks;
    • Related policies supporting agroforestry, including links with the ASEAN FAF Vision;
    • Different roles and objectives of agroforestry, including consideration of trade-offs;
    • Incentive and motivations for adoption agroforestry systems (in comparison to alternative agricultural option)
    • Agroforestry options under different conditions;
    • Principles (social, environmental, economic, SDG and FLR) that should inform agroforestry program design and implementation;
    • Safeguards, including mechanisms for monitoring and certification;
    • Financing mechanisms and benefit sharing;
    • Research, analysis and development support (case studies, action research);
    • Mechanisms for adaptive learning and sharing of lessons;