For decades, Cameroon’s forest policy focused on large-scale forest concessions mainly oriented to western markets. The domestic timber market had never been on the agenda of Cameroon’s Ministry of Forest and Wildlife (MINFOF). The volume of timber sales in the local market, as well the national consumption of sawn wood had not been officially recorded.
This project, led by CIFOR, was designed to improve knowledge in this sector, especially with regard to improved regulation that would facilitate the integration of the domestic timber market into the sustainable forest management agenda of the government.
About 2 million m3 of the round wood coming from artisanal chainsaw milling flows into the national market. This volume represents about 50% of national production. In terms of jobs, while 13,000 people are employed by the formal industrial sector, about 45,000 people are affected or employed by the artisanal informal sector both in rural and urban areas. As such, this project had the potential to positively affect half of Cameroon’s national timber production and thousands of people who had been, or were continuing to be, penalized by Cameroon’s legal framework.
FTA’s partner institution, CIFOR, influenced the drafting and implementation of a new policy manual designed to organize the national timber market (MIB), which will contribute to better management of Cameroon’s domestic timber market.