WASHINGTON, January 26, 2018--The World Bank today approved a total amount of $15 million from the International Development Association* (acting as an Implementing Agency of the Forest Investment Program under the Strategic Climate Fund) to help the government of Cote d’Ivoire reverse the trend of deforestation and forest degradation.
The newly approved Forest Investment Project (FIP) will help conserve and increase the forest stock. It will also improve access to sources of income from sustainable forest management for selected communities in targeted zones in the south west and central regions, which are respectively the current and former cocoa belts in Côte d’Ivoire.
Direct beneficiaries of the project include farmers and forest dependent communities of about 345,000 people, who will benefit from both self-employment and agricultural employment opportunities. By rebuilding and conserving the country’s natural wealth (forests and parks), the FIP will contribute to the long term sustainable development of natural resources, therefore creating more opportunities for those communities to benefit directly from their potential returns.
“We are happy to support the government with this new investment, which is the first program to pilot the implementation of the country’s forest sector policy launched in 2017, targeting a zero-deforestation agriculture by 2020. It will potentially impact income poverty rates in the two selected regions, which have high rates of deforestation and are connected through migration of cocoa producers,” said Pierre Laporte, World Bank Country Director for Cote d’Ivoire.
Most specifically, the FIP will support a sustainable management of the Gazetted Forests and the surveillance capacity of the Taï National Park by involving dependent communities and proposing incentive mechanisms that would provide them with alternative revenues, thereby reducing human pressure on the protected areas.
“Co-management with community and stakeholder involvement is key for a successful implementation of forests restoration and conservation initiatives. We expect the new project to achieve successful results that the country can build upon in the future,” said Laporte.
The FIP is well aligned with both Cote d’Ivoire’s newly adopted Forest Sector Policy, and the World Bank Group’s Country Partnership Framework (2016-2019) aimed at reducing extreme poverty and promoting a shared prosperity.
* The World Bank’s International Development Association (IDA), established in 1960, helps the world’s poorest countries by providing grants and low to zero-interest loans for projects and programs that boost economic growth, reduce poverty, and improve poor people’s lives. IDA is one of the largest sources of assistance for the world’s 75 poorest countries, 39 of which are in Africa. Resources from IDA bring positive change to the 1.5 billion people who live in IDA countries. Since 1960, IDA has supported development work in 113 countries. Annual commitments have averaged about $18 billion over the last three years, with about 54 percent going to Africa.