Transporting logs in Côte d‘Ivoire

Core area “Conserving nature and natural resources, protecting life on Earth” Conserving forests and biodiversity

Some 60 per cent of Côte d'Ivoire's forests have been cut down over the last three decades. One major factor in this deforestation has been the expansion of agriculture. This is posing an acute threat to protected areas and their biodiversity. One focus of Germany's development cooperation activities is therefore on conserving forests and biodiversity.

The share of Côte d'Ivoire's territory still covered by forest has shrunk to nine per cent. This is also leading to microclimate change, with a risk of reduced rainfall. The government is planning to conserve the remaining forest, restore up to three million hectares of forest area by 2030, and bring the share of forest area back to 20 per cent by 2045.

The German Development Ministry (BMZ) is supporting reforestation and biodiversity conservation. This includes projects in Côte d'Ivoire's two largest national parks, Taï and Comoé. These UNESCO World Heritage Sites provide habitats for numerous mammal species, such as forest elephants, chimpanzees, and pygmy hippos. The two parks also have significant climate benefits. Together, they provide sinks for 130 million tonnes of carbon.

Germany is helping Côte d'Ivoire to improve the management of the parks and to develop their infrastructure. In buffer zones, local people are assisted in increasing their incomes from agriculture through sustainable farming techniques and technical innovation. Under the new Climate and Development Partnership, the two sides are also planning to provide more financial incentives for smallholders to invest in forest conservation.

In order to prevent the protected areas from becoming more and more fragmented, Germany also supports a regional project for the establishment of an ecological corridor between the Taï National Park and a protected area in neighbouring Liberia.

The reforestation effort in Côte d'Ivoire will contribute to the African Forest Landscape Restoration Initiative (External link) (AFR100) target of restoring 100 million hectares of degraded and deforested forest land. Côte d'Ivoire and the EU have also concluded a Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) to improve forest governance with a view to reducing illegal deforestation. Germany has been providing strong support to both the AFR100 effort and the VPA.

As at: 27/03/2024