Financial Performance, National Programme
The national REDD+ strategy document of Bangladesh was completed in 2019. The first national consultation on the strategy was held in February 2019, focusing on institutional arrangements and coordination, and was followed by target-setting workshops in April and a national workshop in May 2019. The final validation workshop for the strategy was held on 29 June 2019.
A revised version of the FRL was submitted to the UNFCCC secretariat in January 2019, having been approved by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change. UN-REDD supported Government counterparts in the technical assessment process, by means of technical training and consultations, up to the closure of the national programme in June 2019.
Following its launch in December 2018, the Bangladesh Forest Information System (BFIS)and its modules were reviewed, maintained and updated during 2019 by the Bangladesh Forest Department with technical support from UN-REDD. A data sharing policy for the Bangladesh Forest Department was approved by the Ministry in June 2019.
Challenges and Solutions
The recommendations arising from a one-week stocktaking mission undertaken in March 2018 were submitted, along with a no-cost extension request, in April 2018, to extend the Programme to June 2019, taking into account the delayed initiation of activities and the lack of a mid-term review. However, these recommendations were not officially communicated to the national project steering committee until December 2018, and many were therefore not acted upon. Prominent recommendations referred to a budget revision, regular meetings of the UN-REDD Executive Board and accelerated actions on the national REDD+ strategy. Formal approval of the budget revision was secured from the Ministry in January 2019, two Programme Executive Board meetings were convened in February and June 2019, respectively, to support the timely conclusion of the strategy, with input from an additional international expert who was recruited to support the review and finalization of the strategy.
Gender and Social Inclusion
The national programme engaged a gender expert for eight regional consultations on policies and measures to ensure that gender concerns were mainstreamed, with the results of those consultations being reflected in the national REDD+ strategy.
The national programme designed a consultation process that ensured the active participation of indigenous peoples and civil society organizations in the process to develop the policies and measures.
This process was based on the participation of national indigenous people and civil society representatives who were selected by their constituencies to engage with the Programme Executive Board. Indigenous peoples were widely represented during the validation of the national REDD+ strategy, which also includes measures to ensure their continual engagement in future phases of REDD+.
UN-REDD support continued to be coordinated alongside the Bangladesh NFI project of USAID. The national programme provided support to the Investment Plan Preparation Project team of the World Bank Forest Investment Programme, as well as inputs to the development of the Global Environment Facility (GEF) project proposal on the Capacity-building Initiative for Transparency and the country proposal for the readiness window of the GCF.
Linkages to SDGs
The national programme contributes to SDG indicator 13 b, by building capacity for climate change-related planning and management. The BFIS supports the provision and transparency of information required to adapt planning processes to the impacts of climate change and to mitigate emissions related to Agriculture, Forestry and Other Land Uses (AFOLU); the REDD+ strategy development process provides a policy framework for these planning processes, and the FRL provides a benchmark against which the effectiveness of plans can be assessed. The national programme also contributes to SDG indicator 15.2 (indicator 15.2.1) by promoting the sustainable management of forests, restoration of degraded forests and increase in afforestation in Bangladesh, through the development and institutionalization of the national REDD+ strategy.