Cameroon and the EU meet to review progress of the FLEGT VPA
24 July 2012
The following article appeared in the Cameroon Tribune, 20th July 2012, following a meeting of the Joint Council dedicated to the implementation of Cameroon's FLEGT VPA to outlaw illegal timber trade. The article refers to Helveta's software which is the technology powering the traceability system (STBC) managed by a consortium comprising SGS and Helveta.
Translation of the article "Le Cameroun et l'Union Europeenne finalisent les accords":
Cameroon and the European Union finalise agreements at the second session of the Joint Council in Yaounde
As part of the Voluntary Partnership Agreement (FLEGT-VPA) between Cameroon and the European Union (EU) on illegal timber trade, the Ambassador, Delegate of the EU, Raul Mateus Paula and the Minister of Forestry and Wildlife (MINFOF), Philip Ngole Ngwese chaired together the work of the second session of the Joint Council dedicated to the implementation of this agreement, last Wednesday in Yaounde. This meeting aimed to review the level of progress of implementing the VPA compared to the action plan agreed last December. An action plan was defined to drive activities between now and the December 2012, the date by which the traceability system (STCB) should be operational.
As a result of the discussions and reflections on action by both parties, the Board, took note of the need to issue certificates of lawfulness, in accordance with MINFOF's (Ministry of Forests) roadmap. For MINFOF, the culmination of this partnership agreement will allow Cameroon to sustainably manage its forests in a legal way, encouraging the flow quality of timber exports to the EU countries which take 80% of timber exports from Cameroon. Raul Mateus Paula, meanwhile, congratulated Cameroon for preparing the announcements as these will move the legality systems towards being operational. "I hope that these texts can specify the operational necessities without weakening the quality, spirit and letter of the Agreement," he declared. At the end of ceremony, honors were given to members of the Cameroonian delegation that had led negotiations for the FLEGT VPA agreement.