The project "Strengthening of the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization (ACTO)" of technical cooperation, known as the Amazon Regional Program is implemented by the GIZ in behalf of the governments of Germany and The Netherlands (DGIS-BMZ). The project is focused on the need to strengthen the capacities of the regional organization ACTO to meet the demands of the Amazon countries (Brazil, Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Peru, Suriname and Venezuela) by regional initiatives and actions for sustainable development in the Amazon.
The Amazon region contains the world largest and contiguous rainforest. This unique ecosystem is home to a great proportion of the world's diversity and owns 20% of the planet´s fresh water having a great influence on global climate. The Amazon is also the habitat and economic area of a local population of great cultural diversity. As the Amazon region opens to development activities, it is increasingly affected by the use and extraction of timber and mineral resources and conversion of forests to agricultural land and grazing.
The objective of a sustainable policy at ecological, social and economic level regarding the management of natural resources in the Amazon region can only be achieved if the parties agree on common goals and new rules. The eight Member Countries (MC) of the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization (ACTO) - Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Peru, Suriname and Venezuela - established in 2002 a Permanent Secretariat with the mandate to coordinate dialogue and regional development policy.
ACTO has achieved the ability to meet the demands of its Member Countries developing and implementing in a coordinated manner regional initiatives and actions for sustainable development in the Amazon.
The Amazon Regional Program works with the Amazon Cooperation Treaty Organization, its organizational units and Ministries of the eight Member Countries in four support lines:
- Support to regional and thematic forums
- Implementation of regional projects for sustainable development
- Creation of a joint system for environmental information and human capacity development (HCD)
- ACTO institutional strengthening and its network capacity internationally
RESULTADOS E IMPACTOS
- The Ministers of Foreign Affairs of ACTO Member Countries agreed in 2010 on the Amazonian Strategic Cooperation Agenda for an 8 years’ period. The topics including forests, CITES, protected areas, biodiversity and indigenous affairs, among others; have an annual work plan.
- ACTO fulfils its function as being a permanent dialogue platform.
- Since 2010 the ACTO participates in the meetings of the environmental Conventions and Forums such as CITES, CBD and UNFF organizing for those forums Amazonian regional preparatory meetings and side events.
- The Ministers of Foreign Affairs decided to raise their annual contributions to ACTO from USD 1,7 Mill in 2012 to USD 2 Mill in 2014 and in USD 2,7 Mill in 2016.
- ACTO is underway in relation to auto-financing: 12% in 2010 to 70% in 2014.
- ACTO´s portfolio of regional projects increased from USD 2 Mill in 2010 to USD 36 Mill in 2014.
The Amazonian Regional Program contributed to the development of the following Regional Projects:
- All countries have an Observation Room to monitor deforestation of the Amazonian basin based on the use of satellite images providing current information on the situation of tropical forest and allowing control of illegal logging.
- Elaboration of two official deforestation maps of the Amazonian Region (baseline: 2010 and measurements from 2012 and 2013).
Issuance of CITES Electronic Permits
- The Amazonian countries agreed to work in the development of electronic systems of issuance of electronic export permits under CITES Convention, in order to eliminate the possibility of falsification of documents and contributing to the protection of biodiversity.
- Approval and signature of a 10 Mill Euros financial cooperation contract with the German Development Bank – KfW, to support and improve the development of issuance of CITES electronic permits systems in the Amazonian countries.
Electronic Identification Key of timber species
- Development of an electronic identification key for seventeen Amazonian timber species subject to significant trade by the Brazilian Forestry Products Laboratory and the Colombian SINCHI Institute with the technical support of the German Thünen Institute.
- This tool facilitates the quick execution and simple control to prevent illegal timber trade by forestry and customs authorities.
- Amazon Regional Program