Private sector contribution as key stakeholder to support Global Green Supply Chains network. Photo: CTWDPA
The international forum, “Together towards Global Green Supply Chains – a Forest Products Industry Initiative”, took place in Shanghai on 22-23 October 2019. The event was organized by the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) in collaboration with Chinese Timber & Wood Products Distribution Association (CTWDPA), the International Tropical Timber Technical Association (ATIBT), and China’s Center for International Forest Products Trade/National Forestry and Grassland Administration (CINFT/NFGA). This forum aimed to promote nature-based solutions within the global effects to achieve the SDGs by establishing and advancing legal and sustainable supply chains, while leading to additional benefits of poverty alleviation, job opportunities, economic growth and substantial climate change mitigation. Several sessions were held throughout these days. Stakeholders including wood supplier from private sector, NGOs and government representatives, had network and discussion about the situation on the global wood supply chain.
Productive forests and forest products play a vital role in protecting carbon stocks, increasing carbon storage and being the substitution of non-renewable resources. That’s why a green market is essential regarding climate change: Timber suppliers are responsible for enhancing carbon storage, while processing industry for clean energy use, and consumers for green purchasing preference. Nevertheless, wood suppliers also mentioned the challenges they’re facing, such as public’s prejudice to forestry industry, non-uniformity of certification standard and the unaffordable cost to apply for certification. Many participants agreed that stakeholders should be included during the policy making process to leverage the capacity and better the contribution of forestry products.
IFSA was having Mahtuf Ikhsan (Liaison Officer for ITTO) and Yu-Tung Hung (Regional Representative for Asia-Pacific) to attend this event. Their attendance was financially supported by ITTO in collaboration with Global Green Supply Chains (GGSC) Secretariat. IFSA delegates participated in this event because youth engagement on Legal and Sustainable Supply Chains (LSSC) programme is really essential and young people should contribute more on promoting Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) in their own community. Beside the learning process that they took on the forum, ITTO and IFSA realized that youth participation on the discussion and decision-making activity are a great opportunity to nurture LSSC initiative through different generations in the future.
Mahtuf raised the issue about timber price determination. Photo: CTWDPA
The forum also highlighted the key and universal problem that private sector in many countries are facing which is related to timber price determination. Forest or timber enterprises generally should have a bargaining power to determine timber price at market level because they are the main actors in producing the timber itself. However, they are currently difficult to participate on price determination because market plays a dominant role in that position and other stakeholders such as middleman also have significant influence on timber supply chain management. The disadvantage creates an unfavorable side for timber enterprises because they often get unreasonable price for their own production. Mahtuf raised this issue to one of the forest private sector stakeholders, Mr. Stephane Glannaz on High Level Business Forum particularly towards Session I : Meeting Challenges of Global Green Supply Chains.
“An independent growth from supply and demand in timber products potentially has devastating consequences for the environment and the economy,” said Mahtuf. “We need to take action and prevent this situation by making all timber stakeholders can work together equally on different aspects of LSSC initiative”
“It’s important to spread and raise the awareness of sustainable forest products to the public. From producers to buyers, each gear has their part in combating climate change,” said Yu-Tung.
IFSA delegates to GGSC Forum, Mahtuf (left) and Yu-Tung (right).
GGSC provides a platform for diversified views and opinions and strengthens the connection between producers and consumers. Information exchange between different level should be implemented to create a better collaboration.
Prepared by Mahtuf Ikhsan (LO ITTO) and Yu-Tung Hung (Asia-Pacific RR) on November 3rd, 2019