Political Economy assessments of the timber sector in 3 African countries
We were delighted to be asked again by ZSL to carry out more political economy assessments. Back in 2018, we undertook assessments of the forest sectors in Cameroon and the Republic of Congo. This time, we updated the assessment of the forestry sector in the Republic of Congo and then carried out an assessment on the Gabonese forestry sector.
In addition to a core Efeca team, we had an experienced team of in-country consultants in both countries who interviewed national and other relevant stakeholders and used their extensive knowledge to support Efeca in ensuring the assessments were thorough.
Topics that were covered included structural and contextual factors such as land tenure structure and economic conditions impacting on the forestry sector, as well as the status of any FLEGT VPA negotiations. The chapter on the Political economy dynamics covered regulatory environment and implementation gaps, forestry ‘culture’ and the role of informal norms and beliefs, the role of formal and informal institutions, and the land economy in the country’s context. We undertook a stakeholder analysis, identifying the main stakeholders in the country, highlighting any specific stakeholder dynamic around timber legality and sustainability and looking in particular at the winners and losers of timber legality and sustainability. Lastly we looked at the challenges and opportunities in the forestry sector and the socio-political and economic drivers of change.