16 No 2

How deep does your cash flow?

Cover image

Photo: G. Wetterberg

Economic viability is one of the three basic tenets of sustainable forest management (SFM). SFM might be perfectly feasible technically, but it will still fail if the enterprises that are supposed to be implementing it struggle to make ends meet.

One big problem is the availability of finance. Banks are reluctant to lend to timber operators, particularly small ones. The bottom line is that small businesses stay small, with the ever-present possibility of shrinking away to nothing. Larger enterprises might be more resilient, but they might also find best forest practice elusive if they continually have to pay high rates for their capital. Who is going to invest in natural tropical forest management? Articles in this edition of the TFU explore this question.

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The ITTO Tropical Forest Update is published quarterly in English, French and Spanish; the French and Spanish editions are usually posted about a month later than the English.

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Content does not necessarily reflect the views or policies of ITTO. ITTO holds the copyright to all photos unless otherwise stated. Articles may be reprinted without charge providing the ITTO Tropical Forest Update and author are credited and the editor notified (tfu@itto.int).

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Putting up the money


Photo: J. Mentore, Farfan &
Mendes Ltd

ITTO and partners have initiated a round of forums aimed at encouraging new investments in tropical forest enterprises engaged in sustainable forest management

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Investing in natural tropical forest industries

The low level of investment in natural tropical forest-based enterprises is a major limiting factor in the spread of sustainable forest management. Can it be raised?

By Kerstin Canby

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Attracting institutional investors

Pension funds, endowments and foundations have trillions of dollars to invest. Can they be convinced to direct such investments towards tropical forests?

By Peter Vind Larsen

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Small and medium-sized forestry enterprises


Photo: Andhra Pradesh Forest

Are they the best bet for reducing poverty and sustaining forests?

By James Mayers

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Mexico's mission


Photo courtesy Mexican Forestry

Attention to markets and public policies is crucial to the promotion of sustainable forest management in the country's tropical forests

By Markku Simula, Gilberto Siqueira, Victor Sosa Cedillo & Timothy Synnott

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Forest certified in Congo


Photo: Edward Parker/
Images Everything

ITTO has assisted a large timber concession in its successful bid for FSC certification

By Björn Roberts

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ITTO's recently funded projects

The projects summarized here were financed at the fortieth session of the International Tropical Timber Council, which was held in May/June 2006

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Palms deserve a big hand


Photo: Haroldo Castro/

An ITTO project proposes mechanisms for the sustainable utilization of palm trees in a conservation area in Bolivia and Peru

By Lucas Benites & Clea Paz

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Out on a limb

The nature of investment in natural tropical forests is changing

By Adrian Whiteman

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Fellowship report


Do trees have feelings?

By Arnold Mundua

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On the conference circuit


Reports on the 15th Session of the African Forestry and Wildlife Commission, the ASEAN-ITTO Regional Workshop on Perspectives of Clean Development Mechanism Forestry Projects in Asia and the Pacific, and the 40th Session of the International Tropical Timber Council

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Recent editions


New books and reports

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Topical and tropical


News from ITTO's Tropical Timber Market Report

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Short training courses for professionals in forestry and related disciplines

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A comprehensive listing of coming conferences relevant to sustainable tropical forest management

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