2010 - 2010


Capacity Building of Timber Validation Department, Voluntary Partnership Agreement

Key Staff:

Kirsti Thornber

The 2003 EU FLEGT (Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade) Action Plan was negotiated and implemented using Voluntary Partnership Agreements (VPAs, bilateral agreements between the EU and countries exporting timber into the EU). VPAs included Legality Assurance Systems (LAS) to ensure that timber destined for the EU markets is produced in accordance with legislation of the FLEGT partner countries. The Government of Ghana and the EU signed the world’s first VPA in November 2009. Ghana’s LAS has five elements: (i) a legality standard; (ii) verification of compliance with the standard; (iii) a national wood tracking system; (iv) issuance of FLEGT licences; and (v) independent audit of the LAS implementation.   A Timber Verification Department (TVD) has been established within the Forestry Commission to verify adherence to the LAS requirements, further staff have been recruited (data management and field teams) and a draft Timber Legality Audit and verification manual has been prepared. The TVD required capacity-building to ramp-up its operations to support credible licensing of FLEGT timber into the EU.   This assignment provided the Ghana Forestry Commission’s Timber Validation Department with assistance in developing verification practices that align with the principles set out in the VPA, in particular relating to verification against the legality standard and data management/analysis for the wood tracking system.

Clients: European Forest Institute

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