Finland Government support to reforms has been through the 2007 – 2016 bilateral programme “Miti Mingi Maisha Bora – Support to Forest Sector Reform (MMMB)”. Although Finland has been supporting Kenya forest sector for more than 20 years, there is still need to take the next step. Under this assignment, a 4-year programme for the future Finnish-Kenyan cooperation in the field of forest sector development to be implemented from 2018 was designed.
With population growth, urbanization and economic development, consumption of forest products in Kenya will continue to increase considerably. The structure and efficiency of the industry at the moment is not sufficient to fulfil the demand of industrial wood products. Unless domestic production is considerably increased through industry growth and productivity improvements, imports bills especially of paper products and wood based panels are likely to increase significantly. Furthermore, the growth in consumption of wood energy will put increasing pressure on the indigenous forests and woodlands. Investments in the Kenyan forests and wood based industries provide a good opportunity to create profitable businesses as well as generate income and employment in poor rural areas.
LTS was involved in identification and formulation of several project concept notes that presented realistic project alternatives, different in terms of project approach, strategy and modality. The notes were analysed by the MFA and Government of Kenya and a decision made on the future cooperation’s strategic scope and approach. The selected concept note was developed by LTS and Indufor into a forest sector programme design document titled “Private Forestry and Forest Enterprise Support in Kenya”.
Value and benefits
This programme is expected to contribute to the second impact area of the Finnish Country Strategy 2016 – 2019, “improved access of people to jobs and livelihoods”, through a specific outcome of increasing productivity and economic opportunities in forestry. The expected outcome of the programme is “Increased economic opportunities in forestry for small scale tree growers and Small and Medium Enterprise (SME’s)”.