The Guyana Forestry Commission (GFC) will continue its engagement with the United Kingdom (UK) as part of continued efforts to lift the ban on greenheart exports from Guyana.
Addressing stakeholder concerns during the presentation of the completed National Forestry Policy Statement and Plan yesterday, GFC Commissioner, James Singh, expressed optimism that Guyana “would be able to make some headway this year”.
“What we do have is a commitment by the UK Agency for Environment that they will be reopening the dialogue with us.”
Following the discussions, Singh said an invitation will be issued to the UK authorities to visit Guyana to observe operations in the industry. He also disclosed that the GFC has completed a detailed plan on Guyana’s greenheart production.
“We did a very comprehensive paper on the stocking of greenheart in Guyana: the amount that was harvested, the amount remaining and we found that there is absolutely no threat to the sustainability of greenheart,” Singh said.
The UK Environment Agency handed down the ban in May 2015, citing the lack of sufficient evidence that Guyana’s “forests of origin are sustainably managed”.
The government had mounted a national response with a committee consisting of the Ministries of Natural Resources, Foreign Affairs, and Business, to lobby the UK to lift the ban.
Guyana has been working with the European Union on finalising its European Union Forest Law Enforcement Governance and Trade (EU FLEGT) Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA). The conclusion of the negotiation is very critical for the holistic development of Guyana’s forestry sector.
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