Legal Concepts and Policy Trends
Chapter 5: The role of the United Nations Forum on Forests
The United Nations Forum on Forests is a unique member of the United Nations family. This is due not only to its status1 within the United Nations framework, but also because of the political history leading to its current form and mandate. The body is probably better known for its shortcomings rather than its achievements. These shortcomings are worthy of examination, as the challenges causing deadlock within this setting reappear when other intergovernmental bodies attempt to create international forest policy.2 The purpose of the forum is to provide an intergovernmental policy-negotiating platform that promotes the management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests, and which strengthens long-term political commitment to this end.3 The forum’s sole focus on forest-related issues could explain the lack of progress made by this institution.
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