UNFF10 Opens, Recognizes the Value of Forests

8 April 2013: The tenth session of the UN Forum on Forests (UNFF10) opened on 8 April 2013, in Istanbul, Turkey, with initial statements emphasizing the need to recognize the multiple values of forests, as well as the linkages of forests to sustainable development and poverty alleviation. The theme of UNFF10 is 'Forests and Economic Development.'

At the opening of the session, Under-Secretary-General for the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA) Wu Hongbo emphasized the many services provided by forests, most of which are undervalued. Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Prime Minister, Turkey, also addressed the meeting, calling for the inclusion of sustainable forest management (SFM) in the post-2015 development agenda and highlighting the importance of UNFF in protecting forests.

Additional statements were delivered by: Néstor Osorio, President of the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC); Jan McAlpine, Director of UNFF; and Eduardo Rojas-Briales, Assistant Director-General for Forestry at the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), who highlighted the role of forests in the post-2015 development agenda, as well as in the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) process.

UNFF10 will include two high-level ministerial working groups and is thus expected to develop two outcome resolutions focusing on forests and economic development and forest issues for the post-2015 development agenda. The session will also, inter alia, host a dialogue with the Collaborative Partnership on Forests (CPF), announce the winners of the UNFF Forests for People and Forest Heroes Awards, and host an array of side events by organizations such as: UN Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE); International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO); the UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD); the UN Environment Programme (UNEP); the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR); FOREST EUROPE; and the Global Environment Facility (GEF).

UNFF11 will convene at the conclusion of UNFF10 to elect new Bureau Members. Live and pre-recorded programming from the session will be made available on UN Web TV. [UN Press Release] [IISD RS Coverage of UNFF10] [UNFF10 Side Events] [UNFF Website] [ECOSOC Press Release]