This panel discussion explored ways to attract investments to support sustainable land and resource use by smallholders, with a focus on sustainable timber production, the palm oil industry and innovative approaches to financing.
Many countries in Southeast Asia are seeking to improve the productivity, profitability and sustainability of smallholder production systems. They have tested a range of mechanisms, drawn on various sources and searched for institutions that can absorb, manage, use and build upon international investments.
Yet many challenges remain. Local governance conditions often do not provide an enabling environment for private investments. A financing gap has emerged because of poor disbursement of public funds. A robust system for mobilizing financial resources is needed to stimulate investments in smallholders and landscapes for green returns. Nevertheless, there are many opportunities to catalyze both public and private investment to finance sustainable land use.
Participants explored challenges and opportunities in the following areas:
- Sustainable timber production: Panelists examined the experiences of government, international investors and producer associations, and research on furniture value chains to understand how timber production can contribute to green growth in Southeast Asia through the sustainable use of natural and planted forests.
- Private sector performance in the palm oil industry: Panelists explored businesses’ motivations, activities and constraints in addressing social and environmental issues, and examined how emerging corporate governance mechanisms will affect forests and people.
- Innovative approaches to financing for inclusive green returns: Panelists presented four innovative approaches to financing that are under development in Southeast Asia. These approaches aim to promote green growth and support the transition to inclusive and equitable low-carbon development.