Kinshasa, 05 July 2019 – Civil society organisations who are signatories of the CSO declaration on the allocation of new forest concessions by the State have made recommendations [1] to the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development demanding the cancellation of forest concessions granted after the law prohibiting this was in effect. Following their recommendations, Greenpeace Africa has said:

“Greenpeace Africa reiterates the result of its analysis published last April, titled “Industrial logging in the DRC: 24 null and void concessions need to be immediately returned to the state”. The report showed that from January 2019, more than 20 industrial logging concession contracts in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), spanning more than 4 million hectares, are null and void, because their concessionaires failed to obtain approval of their management plan within the legal deadline, or did not file a management plan at all.

“It is urgent that the new government of the DRC ensures good governance and law enforcement in the forestry sector. Greenpeace Africa calls on the new government to sign a decree returning the expired titles to the state and initiate legal action to sanction all companies and officials involved in the violation of the law.

“An independent verification of the Milestones of the Letter of Intent between the Central African Forest Initiative (CAFI) and the DRC government is ongoing. This verification will provide recommendations for Milestones to be considered for the next phase of the agreement, from 2021. All the illegal allocations should stand out in the verification process. It is therefore essential that CAFI conditions further collaboration with the DRC government on the immediate return of all concessions without management plans, as well as all other illegal concessions, and make a public statement to this effect. In addition, CAFI must abandon any plans to fund any programme that promotes further greenhouse emissions”.

Notes:

[1]  Agence Congolaise de Presse, La Société civile environnementale recommande l’arrêt de l’attribution des concessions forestières, 2 July 2019

Media contact:

Afy Malungu, Communications Officer for the Congo Basin Forest Campaign – Greenpeace Africa, amalungu@greenpeace.org,  +243810583517