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News release

ITTO to host certification workshop

Yokohama, Japan, 28 February 2002

An international workshop on certification to be held in April will contribute to the resolution of several critical issues in forest certification.

The ITTO International Workshop on Comparability and Equivalence of Forest Certification Schemes will be convened in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 3-4 April 2002. It will:

• invite ITTO member countries and other interested groups to discuss the principles, frameworks and elements of certification schemes;
• identify principles and critical elements relevant to the development of standards for certification;
• review progress being made towards the comparability and equivalence of certification schemes;
• obtain the perspectives of buyers' groups on certification; and
• recommend relevant activities for ITTO and its members.

An overview paper on the comparability and equivalence of certification schemes is being prepared; a draft will be circulated to registered workshop participants and a final paper presented during the workshop.

Participation in the workshop is open to: ITTO member countries; relevant international organizations; representatives of certification schemes; relevant private sector groups; relevant non-governmental organizations; and buyers' groups. FAO will collaborate with ITTO in convening the workshop. No registration fees will be charged, but attendance is limited to a maximum of 80 participants. The working language will be English.

For more information contact: Mr Amha bin Buang, ITTO Secretariat, Yokohama, itto@itto.or.jp