National Forest Certification Approaches Trigger Interest @ Forests Asia Summit

There is a strong interest in learning more about PEFC’s unique bottom-up approach to forest certification and the benefits it offers to promoting sustainable forest management in Asian countries,” reported Sarah Price, Head of Project and Development at PEFC International, from the Forests Asia Summit in Jakarta, which was opened today. “Participants are especially interested to learn about Indonesia's new forest certification system (IFCC) and when they can anticipate PEFC-recognized, certified forests in Indonesia.”

The Forest Asia Summit, which opened its doors earlier today, is the largest in Asia in recent years and has attracted more than 2000 stakeholders from Southeast Asia and across the world. Ministers from across Southeast Asia join CEOs, civil society leaders, development experts and the world’s top scientists to share knowledge on how the region can accelerate the shift toward a green economy by better managing its forests and landscapes.

PEFC Continues Expansion in the Tropics

Indonesia has become the latest Asian country to join PEFC after after China and Malaysia, demonstrating that PEFC is the forest certification system of choice for region. TheIndonesian Forestry Certification Cooperation (IFCC) decision to join the world's largest forest certification system was founded in PEFC's unique bottom-up approach, which respects the uniqueness of sovereignty, ecosystem diversity, and the culture of every country.

“Indonesia is home of some of the most biologically diverse forests in the world.  We are looking forward to working with IFCC to promote sustainable forest management through forest certification and welcome them as a PEFC member,” said Ben Gunneberg, PEFC Secretary General.

“PEFC has refined its Sustainability Benchmarks over the past years to remove barriers to tropical forest certification, and we are excited to see the development of a national forest certification standard by Indonesians for Indonesians,” added Mr. Gunneberg. "The promise of Indonesian's forests being managed sustainably, in a manner that provides people with jobs that comply with the fundamental ILO conventions, safeguards forest biodiversity, and protects them from conversions, should be viewed by all who care about saving the world's forests as an important first step in the right direction. The fact that the challenges of the past will be addressed for a sustainable future is positive."

Indonesian Forest Certification Scheme Open for Public Consultation

With the application of the Indonesian Forestry Certification Co-operation (IFCC) for PEFC endorsement, Indonesia has become the third Asian country after Malaysia and China to seek PEFC endorsement. Stakeholders globally are invited to provide feedback on IFCC’s compliance with PEFC International’s Sustainability Benchmarks by 1 February 2014.

“We appreciate the opportunity that PEFC is providing independent national forest certification systems such as IFCC to develop its own standards tailored to our national and local political, economic, social, environmental and cultural realities,” said  Dradjad H Wibowo, Chairman of the IFCC. “Finding the right balance that protects forests and the people who depend on them is critical to achieving long term sustainability. PEFC’s bottom up approach has enabled Indonesian stakeholders to develop a robust standard that considers Indonesia’s unique needs and therefore has the potential of wide adaptation.”