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XV World Forest Congress 2-6 May 2022, Seoul, Republic of Korea

Created by Bernd Unger |

In May 2022 AHT GROUP participated in the XV World Forest Congress (WFC), in Seoul, South Korea. The five-day WFC is organised every six years to discuss the latest issues in forest management and environmental challenges, such as nature-based solutions to climate change, biodiversity loss, land degradation, hunger and poverty. This year the WFC ( was hosted by the Korean Forest Service and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). One of the main outcomes of this year’s WFC is the SEOUL FOREST DECLARATION (draft: The main points of the declaration are:

  1. We need to act now – there is no time to lose.
  2. The responsibility for forests should be shared and integrated across institutions, sectors and stakeholders in order to achieve a sustainable future.
  3. Investment in forest and landscape restoration globally must be at least tripled by 2030 to implement global commitments and meet internationally agreed goals and targets.
  4. Production and consumption need to be sustainable, and policies should foster innovative green financing mechanisms to upscale investment in forest conservation, restoration and sustainable use.
  5. Wood is one of humanity’s most ancient raw materials but can take us into the future – it is renewable, recyclable and incredibly versatile.
  6. Forest degradation and destruction have serious negative impacts on human health and well-being.
  7. Innovative technologies and mechanisms are emerging for the provision of, and equitable access to, accurate information and knowledge on forests.
  8. Forest-based solutions must be inclusive of the perspectives of family farmers, smallholders, forest communities, Indigenous Peoples, women and youth and respectful of their rights, and they must empower them to participate equitably in decision-making and sustainable forest value chains.

AHT GROUP was represented by Mr Bernd Unger, participating in two functions:

  1. As Chief Technical Advisor (CTA) of Forest Programme III (FPIII), Indonesia (funded by BMZ via KfW):

At the invitation of the Secretariat of the General Director for Social Forestry, Mr Unger participated in a side event organized by the Indonesian Ministry of Environment and Forestry (MoEF) on "The Role of Social Forestry in Facing the Covid-19 Situation" (Link zum Flyer), presenting the Covid-19 activities implemented by FPIII. Between June and September 2020, FPIII supported farmer groups in planting almost 280,000 fast-growing trees and medicinal plants such as ginger, turmeric and citronella. A survey conducted 12 months after the planting showed that the participating families were able to generate an additional income of approx. EUR 560 (approx. IDR 9,300,000), a significant sum for the people in the project region of Central Sulawesi.

  1. As Chair of the Forest Interest Group (FIG) of the Environmental Peacebuilding Association (EnPAx:

In connection with his engagement with EnPAx, Mr Unger presented a poster on "Environmental Peacebuilding and Forests: Networks, opportunities, and Resources" (Link zum Poster) and organized a side event on "Healthy Forest and Sustainable Livelihoods" (Link zum Flyer) where he gave a presentation on "Community Conservation Agreements (CCA)". The example of CCA presented by Mr Unger concerns access to Non-Timber Forest Products in Lore Lindu National Park. CCAs are a widely used tool for the mitigation of land use and land tenure conflicts. 

Bernd Unger presenting his poster