16th Sharing Meeting of NNN

June 7, 2002

The sixteen sharing meeting of Nepal NTFP Network (NNN) was held on June 7, 2002 at New ERA office, Kalopul, Kathmandu. The following members were present in the meeting.

PARTICIPANTS

  1. A. L. Joshi, NARMSAP
  2. Bal Gopal Baidya, New ERA
  3. Bhairab Risal, NEFEJ
  4. Bharat Rai, ANSAB
  5. Bigyan Acharya, USAID
  6. Dinesh Paudel, NSCFP/SDC
  7. Hari Dhungana, ANSAB
  8. Lalit Kattel, BU/New ERA
  9. M. L. Jayaswal, BU/New ERA
  10. Moon Shrestha, CRT
  11. Narendra Rasaily, BU/New ERA
  12. Pratap Man Shrestha, FAO
  13. P. L. Moktan, New ERA
  14. Rajendra Khanal, CARE
  15. Rakesh Munankami, MEDEP
  16. Sharad Rai, ITDG
  17. Yogendra Prasai, New ERA

AGENDA

  1. Recap of 15th NNN sharing meeting and follow-up on developments
  2. Draft Plant Resource Bill
  3. NTFP Technology Resource Center
  4. Miscellaneous Sharing

SUMMARY OF DISCUSSIONS AND CONCLUSIONS OF THE MEETING

Hari Dhungana welcomed the meeting participants and thanked New ERA for hosting the NNN meeting. He expressed ANSAB’s apologies for absence of NNN Coordinator Bhishma Subedi in the meeting as he was abroad under organizational imperatives. After self-introduction by the participants, he proposed Dr. Bal Gopal Baidya, Senior Research Associate of New ERA to chair the meeting.

Dr. Baidya, chaired and facilitated the meeting process. He started the meeting welcoming all the participants and briefly outlined the programs and activities carried out in Nepal by New ERA.

1. Review of 15th NNN Sharing meeting and follow-up on developments

Bharat Rai briefly reviewed the follow up activities, which was discussed in the 15th NNN Sharing Meeting. He also mentioned that some of the members, who were supposed to provide information on the current developments, were out of Kathmandu

2. Draft Plant Resource Bill

Realizing the long-term effect of the provisions of draft plan resource bill on entire community forestry processes, the participants had actively discussed the need to provide suggestions to amend the draft plant resource bill. It was appreciated that a task force was even formed promptly to act on the issue in the 15th NNNSM. Hari Dhungana and Bhairab Risal reported that the task force work was postponed its work due to dissolution of House of Representatives. Since this draft plant resource bill is less in priority, there is no chance that it would come through ordinance.

3. Biodiversity Registration

Pratap Man Shrestha reminded that Nepal has applied for WTO membership and has planned to get accession within the tenth five-year plan period and for this purpose it is necessary to collect base data and initiate registration of biodiversity. Although MFSC has a pilot program in two districts, it is less likely to involve local participation, as there is no immediate incentives for the communities. This necessitates disbursements from national treasury in the registration process. He added that it’s a good idea to maintain the base data from the VDC and DDC. Adding to it, Bigyan Acharya informed that Environment Division of MFSC has selected two districts to test the biodiversity registration process.

Rajendra Khanal mentioned that it is important to start the registration and documentation from community level. However, registration format used by organizations differs from one to another. So, uniformity is needed for registration process. To address this issue Dinesh Paudel proposed NNN to initiate discussion among different stakeholders by organizing interaction and start registration process in the community. He added that since FUG has to mention species names in the community forest operational plan, NSCFP considers itself as biodiversity register. Pratap Man said that there are two ministries MFSC and MOAC to look after biodiversity and need coordination for smooth work. He suggested preparing one page suggestion and providing to the Government could be useful.

Bhairab Risal informed that there is a proposal on not to include agriculture in WTO. He questioned what would happen when Nepal becomes a WTO member. For registration process, Federation of DDC, Federation of VDC and Municipal Association could be useful. He said what information is needed should be made clear and like birth and death registration, biodiversity is also possible to be registered.

Reminding the CF history, Amrit Lal said CF is an example of decentralization. One should not expect much from the Ministry, as it is a ‘Respect and not Expect’. Similarly, NTFP alone can not be separated from the CF. Mentioning the importance of regular contacts, Bhairab and Pratap Man said ANSAB should lead NNN in developing relation with government officials. In addition to this, Narendra Rasaily and Yogendra Prasai asked to work out what information is currently available and what need to be explored to prepare applicable registration format. It is also useful to contact FUGs and Nepal Foresters Association. Lalit Kattel raised who will carry out the registration, as there is government, community and individuals and it will be difficult task if the processes are not clear.

IIt was agreed that ANSAB would discuss with government officials in biodiversity registration matter, and also collect existing registration formats from different organizations.

4. Technology Inventory

Rakesh Munankami informed that compiling Technology Inventory by MEDEP is undergoing. The purpose is to collect information on technology used by different organizations and disseminate to rural community. Sharad Rai remarked that it’s a good idea to share technology information, but one should not consider only enterprise-based technology, as it is equally important to reduce women drudgery. Giving the example of ghatta (water mill), he said social aspect plays a vital role in the community. Moon Shrestha added that ghatta association is helpful.

Referring to government five-year plan, Pratap Man said enterprise plays a crucial role to poverty alleviation. However, technology is not only enough and need overall package. M. L Jayasawal added visiting outside Kathmandu might help to collect hidden but very useful technology. Dinesh Paudel said organization’s staff members might not have real information and suggested to go to the community.

5. Market Information System (MIS)

M. L. Jayasawal asked why the price list published by three organizations does not match. In addition to this Dinesh Poudel remarked price list need to be improved as MIS project is running in the second year. Pratap Man added additional information including price list source should be mentioned.

Narendra Rasaily said that government circular does not reach to FUGs. On the other hand circular is misinterpreted by DFO. Citing one example, he said there is a clear instruction by the government to collect 40 percent royalty for timber only in the terai. However, District Forest Office has been collecting 40 percent royalty from FUGs members to all types of NTFPs in the hills and mountain districts. Bigyan Acharya raised how people at grass roots level get government circular on NTFPs issue. Pratap Man suggested, as MIS/ANSAB is the liaison project; it should play the role to disseminate the information at proper places wherever possible.

6. Miscellaneous

Sharad Rai mentioned that outcomes of the meeting have to be taken seriously and information has to be updated. Pratap Man informed that Forestry Sector Coordination Committee (FSCC), that is a MFSC-donor interface for forestry policies, does not include the NTFP sub-sector among its working groups.

IIt was reported that people form neighboring countries have been collecting Yatshagumba from the western mountain region of Nepal. If it is true then it will have negative repercussion in the near future. More over the royalty rates for Yartshagumba is still unscientific and has further inspired for illegal trade. The sudden band of Kutki also created frustration to many collectors and petty traders. It was agreed to lobby from the NNN to systematize royalty rates.

Bharat Rai informed that ANSAB is working on a preliminary concept for a new project ‘Global Development Alliance (GDA)’, in which NNN will be one of the alliance member. The detail information will be provided in the next NNN Sharing Meeting.

Next Meeting:-

Date : The Seventeen-NNN Sharing Meeting will be held on Friday August 2, 2002 at 1300 Hrs.

Agenda : Among other points to be identified later, the following agenda will be included:

  • Recap of 16th NNNSM
  • Updates on
    - NTFP Technology Resource Center
    - MIS
  • Technology Inventory
  • Sharing of NTFP activities
  • Other issues to be suggested by members

Venue : The meeting will be held at MEDEP, Ekantakuna, Lalitpur