Between 1960 and 2017, Côte d'Ivoire's forest cover fell from 12 million hectares to less than 3 million hectares as agriculture, and cocoa production in particular, expanded. Deforestation rates remain extremely high at around 3% (even more than 4% annually in the gazetted forests outside protected areas), posing a threat to the provision of environmental services which are essential for consolidating Côte d'Ivoire's agricultural economy.
Drivers of deforestation and degradation
The main drivers of deforestation are international trade in commodities such as cocoa and rubber, and domestic demand for staple crops such as yam and rice.
To address these drivers Côte d'Ivoire plans to:
- Improve land use governance in collaboration with the FLEGT Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) process
- Shift to a greener development paradigm
- Decouple agricultural production from deforestation by investing in sustainable agricultural practices, land use planning and securing land tenure
- Strengthen protected area management
- Facilitate public-private partnerships for plantations
REDD+ actors and activities
The National REDD+ Commission (CN-REDD+), within the Ministry of Environment, Urban Health and Sustainable Development, leads the REDD+ process at national level. There is also an interministerial Technical Committee on REDD+ (CT-REDD+).
A national REDD+ strategy is planned for 2017. Civil society organisations and local communities have established a platform for coordinating their engagement in the REDD+ and VPA processes jointly.
Côte d'Ivoire is a beneficiary of the World Bank's Forest Carbon Partnership Facility and is a partner country of UN-REDD.
Status of FLEGT Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA)
In 2013, Côte d'Ivoire and the EU began negotiations towards a VPA to improve forest governance and ensure that only legal timber and timber products reach the EU market.
For more information, see the Côte d'Ivoire page on the EU FLEGT Facility's website.
EU REDD Facility briefing note: Comment concilier développement agricole et forestier en Côte d'Ivoire et à quel coût?