Independent Forestry Pematau Network (JPIK) with CSO Laos. Photo: Maryik Upik / JPIK

Tuesday (9/19), Indonesia again received a visit from another country to share experiences in the success of achieving the FLEGT License which came into force on 15 November 2016 ago. Not only visiting the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, the Lao CSO also visited other stakeholders involved in the implementation of the SVLK. JPIK as one of the Independent monitoring institutions has the opportunity to share experiences with CSO Laos.

The Lao CSO who visited joined the platform called Lao CSO FLEGT, including the Lao Biodiversity Association (LBA), Wildlife Conservation Association (WCA), Association for Community Training and Development (ACTD), Rural Research and Development Promoting Knowledge Association (RRDPA), Maeying Houamjai Phathana (MPH) and WWF-Laos. The country with the capital city of Vientiane is negotiating with the European Union to obtain a FLEGT License. The first negotiations were carried out in April 2017. Laos will also develop a system to verify and certify the legality of wood products exported to the European Union, and make other commitments regarding transparency and independent monitoring.

It is a pleasure for JPIK to get a visit from CSOs involved in the system development process in their country. A visit from 6 representatives of institutions involved in the construction of the Laos timber certification system to the JPIK national secretariat in Bogor to share experiences on how the role and involvement of JPIK has so far been in the implementation of the SVLK.

Muhamad Kosar, JPIK National Dynamics Coordinator, conveyed JPIK’s experience in monitoring SVLK implementation and advocacy of policies and challenges of independent monitors in carrying out their roles. In its role, JPIK also ensures 3 things to be achieved, namely capacity building for members and communities who are around the concession and industry, monitoring SVLK implementation and system improvement.

The 3-hour meeting received great enthusiasm. JPIK hopes that the learning gained by Laos CSOs in Indonesia can help a lot in the process of negotiation and system development by the Government of Laos and other stakeholders, so that it can jointly eradicate the trade in illegal timber in the world.