New donors to CAFI Fund, over 50 million dollars for Central African forests


Germany, South Korea and the European Union bring new pledges of support to preserve the "second lung" of the Earth 

New York, 22 September 2019: Donors to the Central African Forest Initiative (CAFI) have stepped up in New York with important pledges to support ambitious climate and forest targets from six African countries hosting the second largest rainforest after the Amazon and one of the largest watersheds in the world.

On the sidelines of the Climate Action Summit, Germany pledged today 33 million US dollars, while the Republic of Korea announced a 2 million dollars contribution. Earlier this year, the European Commission had announced a 17 US$ million contribution.

These new donors seek to enhance existing preservation of rainforests across the six CAFI partner countries – Cameroon, Congo (Republic of), the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Equatorial Guinea, and Gabon – through a holistic approach that addresses all sectors affecting forests.

“Our contribution to CAFI demonstrates our genuine commitment to coordinated and scaled up actions in the Central African region, where rural development and land use planning are key to tackling the root causes of forest loss,” said Dr Maria Flachsbarth, State Secretary to Germany’s Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Chongho Park, Deputy Minister of the Forest Service of the Republic of Korea, declared : “Our contribution shows our commitment to sustainable forest management by reducing deforestation and improving the lives of communities. South Korea, as a country experienced in forest rehabilitation, aims to contribute to maximizing the role of forests in addressing climate change and poverty reduction.” 

These pledges are additional to Norway’s 150 million US dollars of results-based payments for emission reductions and removals with Gabon, and come only a few weeks after President Emanuel Macron signed a Letter of intent between CAFI and the Republic of Congo (US$ 65 million US dollars, channelled through the CAFI Fund as well as via new bilateral commitments from the French Development Agency, UK’s DFID and Germany’s Ministry for Environment).

Established in 2015, CAFI supports strategic and holistic national investment frameworks based on REDD + and low emission development, focusing on six high forest cover countries in Central African region.

CAFI is managed by the United Nations Multi-Partner Trust Fund Office (MPTF), where United Nations agencies, the World Bank and bilateral development partners act as implementing agencies to support partner countries. The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) hosts the CAFI Secretariat in Geneva.

Additional information about Germany’s engagement in forest preservation

  • The German Government supports the global forest protection agreements of the United Nations and of other forums and processes. It cooperates closely with other European governments and international partners. One particularly noteworthy cooperation arrangement has been initiated together with the governments of Norway and the United Kingdom (Germany, Norway, United Kingdom – GNU). The three countries have agreed to work together closely to improve coordination and promote ambitious programmes to achieve the goals set out in the New York Declaration more quickly and efficiently.
  • In addition to its significant bilateral cooperation in the areas of biodiversity and forests with the DR Congo, Cameroon and the Central African Republic, Germany is engaged in a variety of regional initiatives such as the Central African Forest Initiative, the Central African Forest Commission (COMIFAC) and the Congo Basin Forest Partnership (CBFPF)
  • Furthermore, Germany’s support is channeled through multilateral initiatives, being currently the second largest donor to the World Bank’s multilateral Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF), alongside Norway and the United Kingdom.

Additional information about South Korea’s engagement in forest conservation

  • The Republic of Korea has signed bilateral forest cooperation agreements with 33 countries to support – and share its own experience – forest restoration and plantation within REDD+ projects to partner countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America.
  • The Republic of Korea has joined initiatives in cooperation with a number of international organizations, including the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and, most recently, started contributing to CAFI. 
  • With FAO, South Korea contributes to Forest Landscape Restoration Mechanism to achieve natural resources restoration and poverty reduction. 
  • South Korea collaborates with CBD on the Forest Ecosystem Restoration Initiative and is one of the leading countries working with UNCCD in the implementation of the Changwon Initiative for Land Degradation Neutrality and supports countries in implementing projects on the restoration and sustainable use of land and forests