December 9, 2021 – As the project on “Sustainable Community-Based Enterprise Development for Improved Livelihood AFoCO/017/2020“ embarks on its second year of implementation in 2022, the 2nd Project Steering Committee meeting was held virtually on 9th December 2021 to discuss the Annual Physical and Financial Progress of 2021, Work Plan and Budget for 2022, and the project’s coping-up measures under the COVID-19 situation.
The meeting was joined by the Project Steering Committee members from Bhutan (National Focal Point, Project Manager and Project Officer from Department of Forest and Park Services, Chief Planning Officer from Ministry of Agriculture and Forests, Chief Budget Officer from Ministry of Finance) and the AFoCO Secretariat. The meeting was chaired by Mr. Lobzang Dorji, the Director of the Department of Forests and Park Services and National Focal Point of AFoCO. In the opening remarks, he formally welcomed all the participants to the 2nd PSC meeting of AFoCO/017/2020.
At the meeting, the Project Manager, Mr. Karma Jigme Temphel, briefly presented the recap of the 1st PSC’s record of discussion and the follow-up activities. The Project Coordinator Mr. Tashi Wangchuk then proceeded with the annual physical and financial progress report for the year 2021. The covid-19 impacted activities such as in-person meetings, training, cross-country visits, and procurement were also highlighted during the presentation.
The AFoCO Secretariat acknowledged the project achievements despite the pandemic situation placing tremendous challenges in the implementation of activities. The Secretariat also further acknowledged the project team for sharing the best practices of the project through the already submitted feature article including the on-site photos.
For the year 2022, the Project Coordinator presented the tentative work plan and budget requirement. The project team also recommended the utilization of the savings and catch-up funds from 2021 to the year 2022. As the work plan and budget allocation were in accordance with the project manual, the committee endorsed the work plan for the year 2022, while the Secretariat recommended updating the work plan for 2022 to reflect the reallocated budget for the corresponding activities.
At the end of the meeting, the PSC committee agreed that the Work Plan and Budget for the year 2022 will be updated as per the recommendation from the committee and the record of discussion will be circulated to the PSC members in due course. Simultaneously, the meeting also advised the Implementing Agency to update the Project Implementation Plan for the year 2022. Overall, the meeting ended with hopes that the Covid-19 situation would improve for the 15th World Forestry Congress 2022 in Seoul to be held in person, so that all the participants will be able to attend and meet each other face-to-face.
Submitted by Sapana Sunar, 2021 AFoCO Fellowship Official from Bhutan