By Chris Lang, 6th April 2012
Cross-Posted from REDD-Monitor
On 8 March 2012, the World Bank announced that the Draft Indonesia Forest Investment Plan was posted on the Ministry of Forestry’s website. The 114-page document was posted in English, with a comment period of “a little over two weeks”.
An Indonesian version has now been produced and is available on the Ministry of Forestry website. But the commenting process is far from transparent. Comments are to be sent to an email address. There is no way of knowing who commented, what they said, or whether their comments were incorporated into the final document. Instead, comments received “will be considered by the team to assess the level of relevance”.
The document is part of the World Bank’s Forest Investment Program, which in turn is part of the Bank’s Climate Investment Fund. The document was to be considered for endorsement at the next meeting of the FIP Sub-committee, which takes place on 4 May 2012. However, the final version must be posted on the FIP website four weeks before the meeting if it is to be considered at that meeting.
A group of NGOs based in Indonesia wrote in protest at the poor consultation process. The NGOs are now demanding that the FIP process in Indonesia is postponed until their demands are met.
The correspondence follows:
- The NGO letter to the Joint FIP Team (16 March 2012);
- A translation of the Joint FIP Team’s response (19 March 2012); and
- The NGO reply to the Joint FIP Team (5 April 2012)
Jakarta, 16 March 2012To:
Hadi S. Pasaribu
Focal Point FIP Indonesia
Ministry of Forestry
CC Program Coordination Unit
Regional and Sustainable Development Department
Asian Development Bank
Senior Climate Change Specialist
Southeast Asia Regional Department
Asian Development Bank
Forest Program Manager
Senior Climate Change Specialist
The World Bank
We, a group from the civil society in Indonesia, would like to thank you for inviting our comments on the draft Forest Investment Plan (under FIP) issued by the Multilateral Development Banks (Asian Development Bank, World Bank, and IFC) together with the Government of Indonesia (Ministry of Forestry). However, we consider the draft to be far from applying the principles of good governance, democracy and human rights in Indonesia. Our concerns, among others, are as follows:
- The FIP draft document that is posted on the Ministry of Forestry websiteis only available in English, not in the Indonesian language, although the document explicitly claims to be a document of the Republic of Indonesia. Furthermore, the document is only available on the website. This is not acceptable, because such a document should ensure effective participation of the Indonesian people, especially indigenous and local communities living in and around the forests. In addition, the World Bank and the ADB’s own policies clearly state that public consultation documents should be available in the national and local languages. Therefore, we question the accountability of these documents to all Indonesian people, especially the more than 60 million indigenous peoples and local communities in and around the forest areas.
- Time given to the public to provide their views and opinions is just two weeks. This duration is too short for the public to read a document with over 100 pages and provide substantial input. This proposed Investment Plan is not serious in involving active participation of indigenous peoples and local communities in and around forest areas, where this program will be executed.
- We do not see that public participation has been taken substantially into account during the drafting of this document. The draft does not reflect input from consultations, written inputs, nor input provided by the Community Chamber and NGO Chamber of the National Forestry Council.
- This draft investment plan does not contain any concrete contributions that will support the implementation of the national REDD+ strategy. Without a clear relationship between the two, this document may disrupt the coordination between state agencies and confuse the orientation of national policies relating to reducing emissions in the forestry sector.
These facts proves that the Asian Development Bank, World Bank, IFC as part of the FIP joint team together with the Government of Indonesia did not seriously consider the input that have previously been submitted by Indonesian Civil Society. Therefore, we urge that:
- The document should immediately be translated to Indonesian and local languages (based on the location of the planned project site).
- The deadline for the public to comment on the draft should be extended, counting from the date when the draft in Indonesian and local languages are made available for public distribution. The duration of this extension should take into consideration the necessary involvement of indigenous and local communities.
- There should be space for local communities and indigenous peoples to participate fully, taking into account the special needs of vulnerable groups (such as women, children, and elderly), and space and opportunities for local communities and indigenous peoples must be created to ensure that input is based on broad participation in discussion of this draft. The process must ensure the international principle of Free, Prior and Informed Consent.
- The document should not merely be provided on a website, but also actively seek local community participation through various participation procedures, taking into account the special needs of vulnerable groups, such as women, children and the elderly.
- The results of wide and genuine consultation should be a main reference in the entire process of FIP, including the drafting of an Investment Plan.
- Considering that FIP claims to be a national document, the FIP draft document should clarify its relation and position with the National Strategy that is being built by SATGAS REDD+.
Based on the above, we demand that the process related to the forest investment plan is postponed until there is synchronization with the process of establishing a National REDD+ Strategy that can actually guarantee to save the remaining forests of Indonesia and improve governance in the forestry sector.
Chairman SATGAS REDD+
Rainforest Foundation Norway
CNCD- 11.11.11, Belgium
NGO Forum on ADB, Philippines
Friends of the Earth, United States
Water Initiatives Odisha, India
Both Ends, Netherlands
Jubilee Australia, Australia
Water and Energy Users’ Federation-Nepal (WAFED)
Pakistan Fisherfolk Forum, Pakistan
Mitra LH Kalteng, Palangkaraya, Kalimantan Tengah
Aliansi Perempuan Sulawesi Tenggara (ALPEN SULTRA)
Koalisi Rakyat untuk Hak atas Air (KruHA), Jakarta
Perkumpulan Punan Arung Buana
Institut Hijau Indonesia, Indonesia
Souparna Lahiri, India
Rato Dominikus, Dosen Fakultas Hukum Universitas Jember
Khalisah Khalid, Indonesia
For the complete correspondence, please visit REDD-Monitor