President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Monday, 7th November, 2022 joined the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, Rt. Hon. Rishi Sunak, to launch the Forest and Climate Leaders’ Partnership (FCLP) at the twenty-seventh session of the Conference of Parties (COP27) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), currently underway in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt.

FCLP is a new political forum that brings together governments and partners to work together to implement solutions that reduce forest loss, increase restoration, and support sustainable development.

It creates a platform for Heads of State and Government and their Ministers to combine their political efforts to accelerate global action to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation by 2030, while delivering sustainable development and promoting an inclusive rural transformation.

This follows the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forests and Land Use, adopted by world leaders at COP26, last year, where they committed to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation by 2030.

The new Partnership will ensure delivery and continued political focus on the 2030 target of the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration. The Partnership will be co-Chaired by Ghana and the United States.

FCLP’s Ministerial session, which will drive the ambition of the Partnership will be co-chaired by Ghana’s Minister for Lands and Natural Resources, Hon. Samuel A. Jinapor, MP, and the United States’ Special Presidential Envoy for Climate, Senator John Kerry.

Speaking at the launch, President Akufo-Addo said Ghana is committed to sustainable land use and the protection and restoration of forest and other terrestrial ecosystems.

He pledged the country’s commitment to work with others to promote forests and other nature-based solutions to climate change.

The President of the Republic touted some forest policies already being implemented by Ghana, such as the Ghana Cocoa Forest REDD+ Programme, the Ghana Shea Landscape Emission Reductions Project, and the Green Ghana Project.

Nana Akufo-Addo said the FCLP will provide a unique space for intergovernmental collaboration and coordinated action with the inputs of non-state partners and stakeholders, adding that Ghana will use her leadership on the FCLP to foster cooperation among tropical forest countries in Africa and beyond, to make the FCLP a successful vehicle to drive significant and impactful contributions to Climate Action.

On his part, the UK Prime Minister Rt. Hon. Rishi Sunak said forests are one of the greatest natural wonders of the world but continues to be undervalued and underestimated.

He indicated that, the best way to achieve the 1.5 degrees Celsius global target requires that we protect our forest, while calling on countries to deliver their climate promises, adding that the United Kingdom will deliver its 1.5 billion pounds pledge.

He disclosed that the UK Government is, also, committing 19 million pounds towards forests protection and called on the private sector to commit funds to address the drivers of deforestation.