USD 62 million to Nepal Government Multi-Stakeholder Forestry Programme
The Multi-Stakeholder Forestry Programme is the product of the first multistakeholder design process to be undertaken in Nepal’s forestry sector. The Programme will build on the achievements of over 20 years of forestry work of the Government of Nepal supported by the UK, Switzerland and Finland. The Programme is designed for 10 years and to be implemented in two phases. NRs 4.45 billion has been agreed as joint grant funding assistance by these three donors for an initial 4 years.
In this regard, a Joint Funding Agreement between the Government of Nepal and the Government of Switzerland represented by the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs Acting through the Embassy of Switzerland and Government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland represented by Department for International Development, was signed today at the Ministry of Finance, Kathmandu, Nepal. The Government of Finland has delegated the administration of its funds for the programme to the Embassy of Switzerland.
The main beneficiaries of the programme will be rural communities in Nepal, especially poor and disadvantaged households and those dependent on forests and most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. The Programme will engage in new and emerging areas such as:
- increasing wealth and job creation by the private sector including farmers, entrepreneurs and financial institutions.
- helping communities to tackle the impacts of climate change
- building the capacity of local communities to engage in piloting and development of payments for environmental services including carbon trading.
This approved phase is expected to last no longer than 4 years depending on progress with defining and agreeing a “National Entity”. It is anticipated that a followup phases will extend from the end of this approved phase until 2021 which will be managed by the “National Entity”.
The Programme will build on the geographical coverage of the UK Livelihoods and Forestry Programme and Nepal Swiss Community Forestry Project from 18 to 23 districts over the first 4 years. The Programme is planned to eventually scale-up to 61 districts over 10 years.
The Programme will be implemented by a wide range of stakeholders including government, non-government, civil society, and the private sector. A Multi- Stakeholder Steering Committee led by the Ministry of Forests and Soil Conservation will give strategic direction to the Programme. The Programme will work closely with other projects and programmes.
The Joint Funding Agreement was signed by Mr Krishna Hari Baskota, Secretary, Ministry of Finance, Mr Thomas Gass, Ambassador, Embassy of Switzerland and Mr Dominic O'Neill, Head of DFID, Nepal on behalf of their respective Governments, in the presence of Mr Asko Luukkainen, Ambassador of the Embassy of Finland.
The Government of Nepal has expressed its sincere appreciation to the Swiss, British and Finland Governments for this assistance and also for the continued support in the development of Nepal.