The Volunteers to support international efforts in Developing Africa (VOSIEDA) has called for a collective effort from all stakeholders within the Liberian timber industry to improve the trade for the benefit of all, especially the country.
VOSIEDA is a Liberian non-governmental organization (NGO) working on multiple poverty front-lines to promote changes and empower poor and underserved communities to live productive, healthier and more independent lives in Liberia and the border regions of countries in the Mano River Union of West Africa.
VOSIEDA Team Leader in Liberia, Timothy Kortu, who spoke recently at a one-day dialogue held at a local resort in Monrovia, said the country is faced with many challenges in the manufacturing of timber to international standards as compared to its counterparts.
In order to mitigate the current challenges confronting Liberia’s timber sector, Liberian timber dealers must be empowered if the sector is to be improved.
Mr. Kortu also urged the Government of Liberia and partners to invest more by training local timber dealers in management of timber and the Liberian forest.
Also speaking, a Ghanaian national admonished Liberians to work in compliance with the Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) for the improvement of international and domestic trade.
The VPA was signed and ratified by the Liberian government and is between the European Union (EU).
It is one of 13 the EU has either signed or is negotiating with wood-producing countries across the world under its Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Action Plan. It is meant to improve the timber industry.
Abraham Guillen, Nature and Development Foundation Representative, said upholding the VPA must be implemented in order to put Liberia’s timber sector on the world map.
VOSIEDA Executive Director, Andrew Tehmeh, urged stakeholders in Liberia’s Timber industry to work together in improving the sector. They spoke recently at a one-day dialogue organized by VOSIEDA in partnership with the Nature and Development Foundation–Ghana, sponsored by the EU–FLEGT program at a local hotel in Monrovia.