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The 15th ASEAN Senior Officials on Forestry (ASOF Leaders 15); June 24th - 30th, 2012, Melia Hotel

Preparations Underway for 13th ASOF Meeting

It's all systems go as the country through the Forest Management Bureau (FMB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources [DENR] makes preparations as host of the 13th Association of Southeast Asian Countries [ASEAN] Senior Officials on Forestry [ASOF) Meeting on July 29-31, 2010.

High level and senior forestry officials from ASEAN countries comprising of Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and the Philippines shall discuss major policies, programs and issues that affect forestry sector in the ASEAN region.

The following side activities shall also be held back to back with the 13th ASOF Meeting: Meeting of the Experts Group on Herbal and Medicinal Plants; Experts Group Meeting on Forest Product Development; and the 11th Seminar on Current International Issues Affecting Forestry and Forest Products.

Organized in 1998, ASOF meets annually to formulate and implement regional cooperation activities in support of the following strategic thrusts: ensuring sustainable forest management and conservation of natural resources; strengthening ASEAN cooperation and joint approaches in addressing international and regional forestry issues; promotion of intra and extra ASEAN trade in forest products and private sector participation; increasing productivity and efficient utilization of forest products; and capacity building and human resources development.

ASOF is one of the subsidiary bodies under the ASEAN Cooperation in Food, Agriculture and Forestry guided by the ASEAN Ministers on Agriculture and Forestry [AMAF] and supported by Senior Officials Meeting [SOM].

In the area of framework and policy guidance, the 13th ASOF Meeting shall discuss among others, a new plan of action in line with ASEAN Community Blueprints with the conclusion of the 2005-2010 forestry action plan.

On the other hand, with regard to ASEAN forestry cooperation programmes and projects, timber certification initiative; cooperation in forest products promotion scheme and the ASEAN Social Forestry Network shall be among this year's agenda.

Other significant matters to be presented and deliberated on shall include recommendations on international issues affecting forestry and forest products; forest law enforcement and governance; forest partnership in Asia; and climate change specifically the ASEAN Multisectoral Framework on Climate Change and countries' experiences on Reduction of Emissions from Degradation and Forest Deforestation (REDD) and pilot projects.

The FMB Director, Forester Marlo D. Mendoza, is ASOF leader for the Philippines. 

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