LATEST NEWS

Major Joint Review Mission: FSSP Partnership and Trust Fund for Forests

   5/17/2006

The FSSP partnership decided that its 2006 Annual Review should be combined with a review of the Trust Fund for Forests. A Major Joint Review Mission for the FSSP&P and TFF, with 3 Vietnamese and 4 international members, worked together in Hanoi between 27 February and 10 March 2006. They met with a wide range of stakeholders in the forest sector, and debriefed stakeholders on their preliminary ideas on 9 March. On 24 March, they submitted two draft reports, one on Partnership and TFF issues. (For copies, contact: fssp@hn.vnn.vn) The Review Mission will revise and submit final reports by 21 April. Then a Partnership Steering Committee meeting will discuss what ideas, directions, or recommendations of the Review Mission it wishes to adopt, and agree upon an action plan for doing so. The FSSP partners will need to compare the Review with ideas being proposed in the draft National Forest Strategy and the draft decree for a new Fund for Forest Protection and Development. The Review Mission recommends that facilitated process to build consensus among stakeholders. The Review Mission recommends that the Partnership align its support behind the forthcoming National Forest Strategy. It does not, however, recommend sector-wide direct budget support, but thinks it more feasible to look at how the TFF, and other ODA funds, could fill strategic financing gaps for NFS implementation, assuming that donors will commit more funds to TFF. They recommend such support begin in 2007: if so, then the international partners and MARD should discuss funding priorities already in June 2006. They also recommend that high priority be given to securing co-financing for the Forests for Livelihood Improvements in the Central Highlands (FLITCH) project. To support such a move, then, would require radical restructuring of the Partnership and the Trust Fund for Forests. The Review Mission proposes: (1) creating a broad Partnership Forum, for all stakeholders to discuss key sector issues once or twice a year; (2) establishing a smaller Partnership Steering Committee, to agree on strategic issues for the Partnership support of the NFS, including TFF support; and (3) setting up NFS working groups (or sub-partnerships) to replace the Technical Executive Committee (TEC). Additional recommendations concern extending donor support for the Partnership and Coordination Office, piloting decentralized activities, and the FSSP operational tools – the Forest Sector Manual, FOMIS monitoring system, ODA database and matrix of affiliation, and the Partnership annual (common) work plan.

FSSP-CO
5/17/2006

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