Welcome Message by General Bheki Cele
General Bheki Cele
Deputy Minister of Agriculture,
Forestry and Fisheries
South Africa’s forests play a significant role in terms of poverty alleviation through job creation, economic growth. Forests can also help mitigate the effects of climate change. Forests must therefore be a critical part a of global and national agendas seeking to ensure sustainable development.
It is against this background that I welcome with pleasure the announcement that South Africa will be hosting the XIV World Forestry Congress 2015.
The XIV World Forestry Congress 2015 (WFC 2015) will be held at the iNkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre, from 07 – 11 September 2015 in Durban, in the province of KwaZulu Natal, in South Africa.
I am delighted as I believe efforts have to be made to profile Forestry as a viable sector that create employment and contributes to the economy.
Furthermore, I believe efforts have to be made to promote and implement sustainable forest management in all its dimensions and to fully capture its contribution to improving human livelihoods and to poverty reduction.
The XIV World Forestry Congress 2015 (WFC 2015) is a perfect and wonderful platform to do.
In this light, together with members of the Local Organising Committee and FAO, I am pleased to invite all people of the world involved with the forests and related sectors to the XIV WFC, to be held for the first time on African soil since its inception in 1926. I am optimistic that the congress will provide a good opportunity for the participants to craft solutions that will benefit the sustained survival of all types of forests and trees outside the forests, wherever they occur in the world.