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ClientEarth Communications

29th December 2016

Communities & forests
Ivory Coast

Consulting local communities in Ivory Coast on forest laws

ClientEarth has been providing legal and technical advice to civil society in Ivory Coast since June 2016, to support their participation in the current Forest Code reform process.

In doing so, ClientEarth is a member of a multi-stakeholder Legal Working Group including participants from civil society, the Ministry of Water and Forests, and the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development.

The aim of this Legal Working Group is to input into the reform of the 2014 Forest Code.

We are working to ensure that updates to the Forest Code will protect local communities’ rights. This includes their right to be informed and participate in decision-making around forests, as well as the independent monitoring of forests in the country.

As part of the Legal Working Group, we consulted local communities, the private sector and local public administrations in four different regions of Ivory Coast during August 2016. This will inform the Group’s recommendations to the Ministry to ensure that the Forest Code benefits everybody.

For example, the Group consulted one local community in Guiglo – in western Ivory Coast. Participants were asked for their inputs on some of the legislation to the Forest Code, necessary for the implementation of the REDD+ and FLEGT processes.

Civil society and village chiefs in Guiglo, Ivory Coast

Photo from our junior in-country associate, Charles Baimey, of our consultation with civil society and village chiefs in Guiglo.

The result of these consultations will inform the new implementing decrees.

ClientEarth will continue to work with civil society to ensure these inputs are reflected in legislation.

Our work hopes to reinforce the rights of communities to share in forest benefits. They have a right to be informed and to participate in the decision-making process on access to and management of forestry resources.