Terms of Reference for the FLEGT Facilitator in Liberia
1. The European Union (EU) adopted its FLEGT Action Plan in 2003, in recognition of the
increasing public concern with the social, economic and environmental consequences of
illegal logging and related trade worldwide. A key element of the Action Plan is a
proposal to establish bilateral voluntary partnership agreements (VPAs) between the
European Union (EU) and timber-producing countries. These will ensure that only
legally-sourced timber products are imported into the EU from these partner countries.
Under these agreements the EU will provide assistance to improve governance and law
enforcement and to put in place systems that verify legality.
2. Liberia concluded VPA negotiations in May 2011 and the agreement was formally signed
on 27 July 2011. Ratification has been completed by both parties and the agreement
entered into force on December 1st 2013. Through delegated cooperation agreement
with the EU the UK Department for International Development (DFID) will hold three
contracts to support the implementation of the VPA.
3. The first of these contracts is for the establishment of a VPA support unit, tasked with the
capacity building of key stakeholders (Government, private sector and civil society) to
implement the VPA. The second contract is for the establishment of the Liberia
Verification Department (LVD) within the Forestry Development Authority. This contract
will establish and implement legality verification and chain of custody before transferring
control of the department to the FDA. The FDA will also establish a Licensing
Department, which will have responsibility for issuing FLEGT licences.
4. The third contract is to provide FLEGT Facilitation support services to the process in
Liberia. The overarching objective of this service is to facilitate a dynamic and well
informed VPA implementation that builds local ownership for the resulting VPA.
FLEGT Facilitation support
5. The ultimate success and credibility of VPAs require: (i) that the wide range of actions
envisaged in the agreements stay on track; (ii) that stakeholder processes that helped
shape the VPA negotiations are sustained and strengthened; (iii) that requirements of
international markets for evidence of legal production of timber and agricultural
commodities produced on forest land are available to and understood by stakeholders in
each partner country; (iv) that the progress made by partner countries in tackling forest
governance challenges, including implementation of their VPAs, is known to international
stakeholders; and (v) that lessons are shared between partner countries negotiating or
implementing FLEGT VPAs, and with other FLEGT-related activities. Effective facilitation
is necessary to help partner governments ensure that these expectations are met.
6. Successful implementation of the VPA also requires the support of all stakeholders and
their commitment to work together to strengthen sector governance. It is therefore
essential that in the implementation of the agreement, the Facilitation support
encourages the effective participation of a wide range of stakeholders.
The FLEGT Facilitator will support the implementation of Liberia’s FLEGT Voluntary
Partnership Agreement with the EU. In particular they will:
· Facilitate the involvement of non-government stakeholders in the dialogue and
consultations relating to the implementation of the VPA, particularly local civil society
groups, representatives of community platforms and the private sector;
· Work with all FLEGT-funded projects, that aim to promote forest governance goals
and tackle illegal logging, ensuring to the extent possible, coherence and coordination
· Facilitate a coordinated donor approach to FLEGT-related activities in Liberia,
maintaining contact with others working on FLEGT, both nationally and within the
· Identify any impediments to the implementation of the VPA and identify strategies for
· Ensure that any progress made in strengthening forest governance or any other
significant lessons learned from implementation that may inform processes
elsewhere are clearly documented;
· Promote synergies between the VPA process and REDD+ initiatives.
· Assist the EU Delegation to prepare for meetings of the Joint Implementation
Committee, and with other VPA-related tasks as requested by the Delegation;
· Prepare/support the preparation of briefing material on the VPA process in Liberia
and the status of VPA implementation as and when required by DFID or the EU
· Ensure that information on the requirements of emerging international market
standards and legislation related to the trade in timber products and agricultural
products grown on forest land that affect Liberia is effectively communicated to
· Ensure close coordination with the teams of the VPA support unit and the SGS team
establishing the LVD;
· Liase closely with representatives of the Liberia expert team of the European Forest
Institute’s (EFI’s) EU-FLEGT Facility in support of VPA implementation;
· In consultation with the EU Delegation, liase with European Commission and the ad
hoc FLEGT Working Group of the Commission and Member States to ensure that
lessons from Liberia are fed back into policy development at headquarters.
7. The FLEGT Facilitator will report to DFID’s Senior Forestry Advisor in London and keep
the Head of the EU Delegation to Liberia in copy. Reports will be prepared on a
quarterly basis and will be submitted in the final week of each calendar quarter (March,
June, September, and December) and should include an update on progress with the
achievement of agreed milestones reflected in the VPA annual workplan.
8. The Facilitator will also ensure that any significant developments in the sector are
reported to both the DFID adviser and EU Delegation as and when they occur.
9. These Terms of Reference cover the contract period from February 2014 to the end of