10th Sharing Meeting of NNN

January 26, 2001

The tenth meeting of the NNN Advisory Group was held Friday, January 26, 2001 at ANSAB Office, Minbhawan, Kathmandu.

Those present

  1. A.L. (Tom) Hammet, Virginia Tech, USA
  2. Arjun Dhakal, NEFEJ
  3. B. Acharya, USAID/Nepal
  4. Bhagawan Shrestha, WATCH
  5. Bhaweshwar Das, SION
  6. Bhishma P. Subedi, ANSAB
  7. D.R. Bhattarai, HPPCL
  8. Govinda Ghimire, SEACOW
  9. Hari Dhungana, FECOFUN
  10. Hemant Ojha, ANSAB
  11. Kamala Gurung, TMI
  12. Meena Pokharel, Himalayan College of Agricultural Science and Technology (HICAST)
  13. Netra Bhandari, CECI
  14. Pratap Man Shrestha, FAO-Nepal
  15. Rajendra Khanal, CARE Nepal
  16. Ram Hari Subedi, ANSAB
  17. Sagendra Tiwari, IUCN Nepal
  18. Sama Shrestha, ANSAB

The Meeting Agenda

  1. Presentation of revised operational policy (incorporating the suggestion of NNN workshop)
  2. Briefing of Central MIS initiatives in Nepal
  3. Briefing from Task Force Group on ” National Register of Medicinal Plants” (IUCN Publication)
  4. Sharing of current NTFP activities by members
  5. Any other issues suggested by members

Summary of the Discussions and Conclusions of the Meeting

Mr. B. P. Subedi welcomed all the participants and requested the group to go through the agenda of the meeting. He informed that NNN workshop was successfully held on November 3, 2000 and a working group was formed to compile the suggestions of the workshop towards the finalization of the operational policy.

  1. Presentation of Revised Operational Policy (incorporating the suggestion of NNN Workshop)Mr. Bagawan Shrestha presented the main recommendations for NNN operational policy identified by the task force meeting held November 6, 2000 (upon synthesis of NNN workshop outcomes).A handout on the NNN workshop summary and the minutes of the task force meeting on operational policy held November 6, 2000 were distributed to all the members and also included in annex1 and 2A discussion on the recommendations was then held. Mr. Sagendra Tiwari pointed out that the vision statement, which is the outcome of the group work during the workshop needs re-arrangement of words so that it looks like a vision statement. Mr. Tiwari volunteered to revise the statement and submit it to the Network.

    The group suggested that NNN Coordination Committee (NNNCC) should remain as CC because of its crucial coordinating function (among various key institution for the NTFP sector and advisory/supporting type of role). The composition of NNNCC should be small in size, balanced between Government and Non- Government sectors.

    The workshop also suggested changing the name of NNN Advisory Group (NNNAG) into NNN Management Committee (MC) and its composition could be around 30. But the group felt that it does not make any sense to have a Management Committee of 30 members. Therefore, the group decided to have a management committee of 9 members, who will be actively involved in managing various issues raised in the meeting and meets as and when required. The group nominated following members to be in the Management Committee:

    1. Bhaweshwar Das, SION
    2. Hari P. Dhungana, FECOFUN
    3. Meena Pokharel, HICAST
    4. Pratap Man Shrestha, FAO-Nepal
    5. Rajendra Khanal, CARE Nepal
    6. Sagendra Tiwari, IUCN
    7. Ken Nicholson, SNV
    8. Narendra Rasaily, NACRMP
    9. Bhishma P. Subedi, ANSAB

    The members in Management Committee may change according to the interest of individual and organization.

    Other member’s meets every 2 to 3 months (as usual) and this meeting will be named “NNN General Sharing Meeting”. This sharing meeting will be informal and open to all interested members with no limit in numbers.

    The group suggested that the membership contribution for the Network could be a good idea but cost benefit analysis has to be done further and will be decided once the analysis is done. The group also mentioned the rotational basis among member organization to organize the sharing meeting. The interested organization will inform the Network and a chart will be prepared and will be circulated. This may also draws special interest among the staff of the particular organization to participate in the meeting.

    The group also decided that the secretariat of the Network could be hosted by interested organization on the rotational basis for 2 years. The group also decided to do the research on the time and effort of the secretariat to run NNN and this will be recorded as a reference for the interested organization.

    The changes made in operational policy from this meeting will be circulate to all the member’s of the sharing committee and will be given 2 weeks for their comments and suggestion. After this, the revised operational policy will be presented to NNN CC for more suggestion and comments for the final time.

  2. Briefing of Central MIS Initiatives in NepalMr. Ram Hari Subedi, MIS Manager informed that the NNNAG meeting held 2 years ago proposed the importance of Central Market Information System (MIS) and NNNAG Task Force had developed a concept paper for a central level MIS. Series of meetings were held to plan this initiative. Finally, the program started from January 2001.The Central level MIS for NTFP is a one-year pilot project funded by SDC and implemented by ANSAB and SNV. This Kathmandu based MIS for the collection and dissemination of NTFP price and demand information is housed at the ANSAB office. The main objective of this program is to coordinate the collection, analysis, and dissemination of market information that is required for different stakeholders in the NTFP sub-sector. The MIS will collect information from within Nepal, from India and from other international markets. It will disseminate the information through various means such as FECOFUN’s radio programs, printed bulletins and a web site. It will also link up with district and VDC level MIS, which disseminate information by posting on bulletin boards.Mr. Hari P. Dhungana informed that the updated information on the price list would be very important for FECOFUN’s working areas. Hence Mr. Dhungana conveyed that he would be asking the Central MIS unit about various items price. Mr. Dhungana would also inform the unit about various NTFP’s produced by these villages.

    Like wise, the group suggested that this program could also reach in the bulletin of airport and bus parks as Agro Enterprise Center (AEC) did for the vegetables and fruits. The program should also give information on the where the quality products are found for buyers, best buyers, best sellers and marketing channels. The case of Kalimati market destruction at the time of shortage of onion was reviewed and suggested that the program should also keep in mind the activities regarding market destruction.

    Mr. Bigyan Acharya briefed about the market information activities initiated by BSP New Era under EFEA’ Forest based Micro-Enterprise Development Program. The program was supported by USAID and is currently undergoing in 5 districts of Dang, Banke, Bardiya, Dolpa and Nepaljung. Mr. Acharya suggested that the Central level MIS should be linked with the BSP New Era program and informed that USAID is interested in linking these activities with other similar projects.

    Mr. Bhaweshwor Das conveyed that Central MIS should reach beyond India.

  3. Briefing from Task Force Group on “National Register of Medicinal Plants” (IUCN Publications)Mr. Bhaweshwor Das summarized the outcome of the task force meeting held January 5, 2001. During the task force meeting, he had presented his in-depth findings on the book. He praised the authors and IUCN for a pioneer work of IUCN towards contributing to the implementation of Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). He at the same time pointed out that the book needs massive improvement. He analyzed the layout, contents and scope of improvement. His main observations were as follows:· Missing of popular plants and it’s varieties
    · The title “National Register of Medicinal Plants” given to this book itself may mislead the reader since it gives information on only few species of Nepal.
    · Inadequate information on the use, indigenous technology and medical values
    · Ignorance of Ayurvedic literature · Mistake in taxonomic identityThe details on his analysis are given in annex-3. The attendees of the task force meeting further explored the scope and strategy for the improvement process. The meeting arrived at the following steps to improve the book:

    · All the Task Force members will review and forward their comments to the Task Force Coordinator (Mr. Bhaweshwor Das)
    · Compilation of comments by Mr. Das.
    · Mr. Das will further assimilate the key points and prepare a note of what they think, needs improvement in the book
    · Presentation to a team of experts, Government authorities and authors, (including Dr. Madhu Sudan Bista, Dr. T. B. Shrestha, Dr. Narayan P. Manandhar, Dr. Uday Raj Sharma and Mr. Ratnakar Adhikari and other experts of Ethno-botany) .The comments along with the proposed plan of action will be presented to seek their opinion and bridge the differences (the meeting to be held at IUCN).
    · The tentative budget will be worked out and potential donor will be identified.
    · The plan of improvement will be brought into action The group decided to give the time of 15 day to all the members so that they have time to go through it and give comments to Mr. Bhaweshwar Das.

    Mr. Das will incorporate the suggestion and present it to the team of experts.

  4. Sharing of Current Activities by MembersMr. Bhaweshwor Das informed that he is currently involved in his own company “Systematic Industrialization of Nepal” (SION). SION is business organizations involve in promoting NTFP industrialization and trade. It facilitates traders and processors of NTFPs. Till now it has short- listed out 250 traded species of NTFPs from Nepal. He highlighted that some species which do not occur in Nepal and are in CITES are traded well from the country. He informed that Sandal wood oil is also traded from Nepal. SION has recently traded Gugulu (Cummiphera muku), which is the outcome of 2 months since it’s establishment.Ms. Kamala Gurung informed that the communities of Sankhuwasava produce good quality of allo (nettle) but they are having problem in its marketing. The group decided that Himalayan Biotrade could be an example to support them in marketing. Ms. Gurung conveyed that Sankhuwasava has various NTFPs but the people needs training to identify useful NTFPs and where to sell them. The group suggested her to contact NNN for the resource person for the training and Central level MIS for the prices.Mr. Netra Bahadur Bhattarai, informed that CECI is working in 12 Community Forest in Jumla supporting NTFP cultivation in 25 ropanies. The program has also encouraged NTFP cultivation in 14 private lands in Jumla.

    Mr. A.L. (Tom) Hammet, Associate Professor of Forest Products Marketing requested all to go through Virginia Tech’s web site: http://www.class.forprod.vt.edu/faculty/hammetta.htm where buyers and sellers meet each other. The viewers can also post their advertisement of their products. The site is free of cost.

    Mr. Rajendra Khanal, CARE Nepal’s shared that NTFP activity is currently undergoing at Bajura, Dang, Bajhang and Banke. He informed that series of workshop were held jointly with SNV, CARE, ANSAB. He encourages partnership work to avoid duplication of activities.

    Mr. Bhishma P. Subedi informed about the Conservation Assessment and Management Plan (CAMP) workshop organized by IDRC, Ministry of Forest and Soil Conservation and IUCN’s Medicinal Plants Specialist Group at Pokhara, January 18-20, 2001. The workshop carried out a threat assessment of 51 medicinal plants species of Nepal and prepared a priority list. The assessments and recommendation were made assigning the taxon to new IUCN Red List Category of Threat. The new IUCN Red list categories are: Extinct (EX); Extinct in the Wild (EW); Critically Endangered (CR); Endangered (EN); Vulnerable (VU); Near Threatened (NR); Data Deficient (DD); Not Evaluated (NE). The workshop also made recommendations for research and management activities to contribute to the taxon’s conservation.

    At last Mr. B. P. Subedi thanked all the members for sharing valuable information.

The Next Meeting

The Management Committee will decide the date for the next meeting.