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Peru: Recommendations

Taking into consideration the background, analysis and conclusions of the Report Card of Peru, the following recommendations are considered. Their aim is to motivate, promote and impact on the public bodies to maximise the levels of transparency and access to information, overcoming the observations and/or problems identified in the Report Card, in such a way that civil society as a whole and the public bodies themselves can exercise their right to participation. The purpose of this is to improve the quality of the decision-making process, increase the legitimacy of the decisions adopted in the eyes of public opinion, and improve public perception of government action, thus contributing to better forestry governance.

For the Forestry Authorities:

  • As a result of the impact of the Report Card, and other organisations, on the draft Forestry Policy and Law, a number of criteria for transparency and access to information were included. In this regard, it is important to follow up on this in conjunction with the organisations, so that these concepts are maintained in the version approved in the congress.
  • There is a need for the public institutions to develop skills and competences to generate and make information available, but the other players must also have the ability to access the information and use it responsibly if they are to participate effectively in forestry matters. It is also important to have an impact on the public bodies, increasing their levels of transparency to allow them to improve their internal management and become more efficient institutions. An existing general legal framework for transparency is certainly important, yet it remains to be complied with, and should be adapted to the procedures and specific regulations in the forestry sector.
  • Although the Ministry of Agriculture has restored forestry sector information on its website, this information also needs to be included in the Report Card. It is also important to keep the regulations, procedures and directives, and information in general up to date.
  • Forestry legislation must develop specific and effective provisions for (a) participation and transparency in monitoring the granting of rights to use forestry resources, (b) logging and use of forestry resources for other wood products, and the environment and (c) cultural services.
  • There is a need to institutionalise the spaces for participation in the important processes in the forestry sector. For example, in the implementation of the Forestry Annexe in the Trade Promotion Agreement between Peru and the United States, this would mean resuming the formation of the civil society consultation group and establishing and institutionalising the official mechanisms for sending comments on the different forestry-related processes. The procedures for consultation and participation prior to the granting of forestry rights will also contribute substantially to early identification of possible conflicts, dealing with existing situations not identified previously, and making more viable the operations with the rights granted. Establishing independent verification to access the right or information on the execution of the right may also be useful in the general management of forestry resources.
  • The recommendations made in 2009 continue to be valid, since there is currently no clear and transparent procedure for taking strategic decisions between the different sectors whose policies, plans and programmes have an impact on forestry resources and ecosystems.
  • There is a need to complement the missing information on the standard transparency portals, as these are simpler to access and are also made compulsory by the legislation on transparency and access to public information. It is also recommended that the institutional transparency portals are not deactivated, as many users are still not aware of the standard transparency portals.
  • In addition to the institutional management information contained on the standard transparency portals, another recommendation would be that the web portals of public bodies also release information on macroeconomic indicators (contribution of the sector, jobs, exports, etc.), rights granted (records, payment of rights, planning, etc.), inventories of forestry resources (inventories, lists of species, geographical information systems, etc.) and on plans for handling and volumes used. These are the blocks of relevant information which displayed a lower percentage of availability.
  • Finally, a general recommendation to keep in mind is that websites should not used as the sole tool to release information, as not all citizens have quality access to these mechanisms. Instead, the institutions must take a proactive role and implement alternative mechanisms for information, such as bulletins, leaflets, publications, radio programmes, etc.

For Peruvian Civil Society working in the forestry area:

  • Participate proactively and actively in the spaces which have been generated to deal with priority topics in the forestry sector, such as Forestry Policy and the Forestry Law, at the level of the executive and congress.
  • Continue with efforts to strengthen its skills and knowledge regarding transparency and access to information for indigenous organisations, and ensure that the indigenous populations are aware of, and able to review and analyse the information, so that their participation in the processes is more constructive.
  • Generate or strengthen sustainable networks to allow constant monitoring, and in particular establish clear positions on topics of transparency and access to information.
  • Place a greater emphasis on strengthening civil society organisations on a regional and local level, so that regional and local public bodies can participate in a suitable manner in the rendering of accounts.

To the International Community:

  • Allow greater presence of the regional and local public bodies in the processes of coordination and dialogue, mainly in those regions where forestry-related functions have been transferred (Loreto Region, Madre de Dios, San Martin and Ucayali).
  • Continue with efforts made to improve levels of access to information, transparency and participation of the Peruvian State and civil society related to the forestry sector, especially in those areas where the Report Card has highlighted the need for improvements.

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