12 December 2018
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African Development Bank (Abidjan)

African Development Bank Reiterates Support for Protection of Congo Basin Forest

The African Development Bank has reiterated its support for the Congo Forest Basin Partnership (CBFP) during its 18th Meeting of CBF on 27 and 28 November 2018 in Brussels, Belgium.

The annual gathering, chaired by Princess Elisabeth and Prime Minister Charles Michel of Belgium, brought together ministers and senior multilateral officials from around the world, reflecting the diversity of CBFP's 107 Members. The meeting also attracted participants from international organizations, multilateral partners, civil society organizations, indigenous peoples, youth, women, the media, academia and the scientific community, universities/scholars, foundations and the private sector. The Director General for Central Africa Region, Ousmane Dore, represented the Bank. Dore, highlighted the major achievements of the Bank in the Congo Basin and activities planned for the future during the session.

A brief report on the activities and prospects of the Belgian CBFP Facilitation and lessons learned was presented at a Donor College meeting organized by Belgium's Minister of state, François-Xavier de Donnea. The report indicated how to strengthen high-level political ownership of the CBFP and High-level cross-border approach to the fight against wildlife crime. A draft "Brussels Declaration" was also discussed.

The Government of Belgium announced the organization of a conference of Ministers in charge of Defense, Security and Protected Areas on the Fight against Poaching and other Cross-border Criminal activities from 23-25 January 2019 in N'Djamena, Chad. The central theme of the conference is: "Threats posed by armed groups moving between the Sahel, Sudan and north of Equatorial Africa with its natural protected areas and local communities: Analysis and Action Plan."

Countries concerned include, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of Congo, Niger, South Sudan and Sudan. Participants will include regional organizations and technical and financial partners concerned with issues relating to wildlife conservation and anti-poaching operations.

As a major donor to the Central African Forest Commission (COMIFAC), the Bank organized an International Conference on Sustainable Management of Forest Ecosystems in the Congo Basin, in February 2008 in Tunis.

A strategy for setting up sustainable financing for the management of forest ecosystems in Central Africa was developed at the Tunis conference. The following year the Bank approved the Congo Basin Ecosystem Conservation Support Program (PACEBCo) for a total of US$ 52.56 million. A second phase is currently under preparation.

In 2014, following the repeated killing of elephants in Central Africa, the Bank financed the Biodiversity Conservation Program in Central Africa - Safeguarding Central African Elephants, for the benefit of the three states (Cameroon, Central African Republic and Chad).

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