FOREST EUROPE
Ministerial Conference

Oslo 14-16 June 2011

About the FOREST EUROPE Ministerial Conference

Securing healthy, sustainably managed forests in the light of climate change and its severe consequences is one of the biggest challenges we have to solve in Europe and globally. The fact that Europe's forests are increasing represents a huge potential in helping to solve these challenges and sustain the vital values deriving from forests for people, their livelihood, our environment and future generations.

At the FOREST EUROPE Ministerial Conference on the Protection of Forests in Europe on 14-16 June 2011 in Oslo, Norway, ministers responsible for forests will meet to take far-reaching high-level policy decisions concerning the continent’s forests. These decisions will lay the foundations for providing effective means that will enhance the role of forests in mitigating climate change, conserving biodiversity, fostering a low carbon economy, providing green jobs and addressing ways and means of tackling the issue of illegal logging.

A key item to be addressed at the conference is the elaboration of a strengthened policy framework for sustainable forest management throughout Europe. In this context, the ministers are expected to decide whether to enter into negotiations on a legally binding agreement on forests in Europe. Moreover, it is expected that ministers will adopt a vision, goals and targets for forests in Europe as part of the future FOREST EUROPE strategy.

Taking action to preserve forests and safeguard their environmental, economic and societal benefits is particularly relevant in 2011, the year declared by the United Nations as the International Year of Forests.

At the Ministerial Conference, ministers and high-level delegates representing FOREST EUROPE signatory countries and the European Union, observer countries from outside Europe and international and regional organisations, as well as academia and others will therefore meet to decide on the future of Europe’s forests and the contribution they make in the broader global context.

The Ministerial Conference is hosted by the Norwegian Minister of Agriculture and Food,
Mr. Lars Peder Brekk, and is organised jointly with the Spanish Minister of Environment and Rural and Marine Affairs, Dr. Rosa Aguilar Rivero. Norway currently holds the chairmanship of FOREST EUROPE and Spain will take over the chairmanship after the Ministerial Conference in Oslo.

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