Monthly Archives: December 2023
Terms of Reference (TOR)
National REDD+ Legal Consultant
National Project Management Unit (NPMU)
Governance, Forest Landscapes and Livelihoods (GFLL) – Northern Laos
The Government of Lao (GoL) has demonstrated its commitment to reduce emissions through its active participation in the global initiative of REDD+ – Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation. The GoL views REDD+ as an opportunity to balance conservation and development through the effective land use planning and sustainable management of its rich forest resources.
The GoL, through the Department of Forestry (DoF) at the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF), initiated its REDD+ Readiness process with its participation in the World Bank’s Forest Carbon Partnership Facility (FCPF). Having completed its REDD+ Readiness, the DoF started its first sub-national emission reduction project through the FCPF’s Carbon Fund in 2018.
Titled Governance, Forest Landscapes and Livelihoods – Northern Laos (GFLL), the project focuses on six northern provinces of Lao PDR, namely Bokeo, Huaphan Luang Namtha, Luang Prabang, Oudomxay, and Sayaburi. The area constitutes approximately one-third of both the country’s geographical and forest area, with a population of 1.8 million people and where the dominant land use designation is forest. The project is managed by a National Project Management Unit (NPMU) located at the REDD+ Division of the DoF.
Given the establishment of the centralised market mechanism under Article 6.4 of the Paris Agreement and the international trend towards zero emissions by 2050, Lao PDR has already initiated its preparedness to revise its national legal framework to align with emerging international requirements. This alignment would ensure that Lao PDR is well-positioned to take advantage of emerging opportunities related to emission reductions, climate finance, and the private sector. This opportunity will also allow Lao PDR to contribute to global climate goals, including its Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) commitments. Lao PDR has already received several proposals from domestic and foreign private sector companies seeking certified emission reductions (ERs) for offsetting.
The National REDD+ Strategy and the 2019 Forestry Law promote forest carbon trade activities by all entities and provide general guidance on such investments. However, a legal framework and technical guidance on management, including development, approval and monitoring of forest carbon projects, harmonisation of REDD+ activities at various scales from national to field level, and how these REDD+ activities, including forest carbon trade, contribute to the achievement of the NDC 2020-2025 needs to be developed. This development needs to take into account the requirements of the market mechanism and the voluntary carbon market.
In addition, the Prime Minister’s Office has issued Instruction No. 426 dated 17 March 2023 that mandates the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment (MONRE) to draft a Prime Minister Decree on Carbon Credits Trading in consultation with concerned sectors. The inter-ministerial committee of Director Generals and Deputies from relevant Departments and Ministries, including the MAF/DoF and its working group, have been established to prepare a final draft by June 2024.
The International REDD+ Policy Adviser has developed a first draft of the legal framework on forest carbon projects under GFLL, and this document has been translated into Lao. The draft legal framework needs further improvement through consultations with public and private stakeholders, taking into account the development of the PM Decree on Carbon Credits Trade and making them consistent.
The GFLL is seeking to recruit a National REDD+ Legal Consultant (NRLC) for these tasks.
- OBJECTIVE OF ASSIGNMENT
The objective of the assignment is to assist the Management of the DoF and the REDD+ Division in improving and finalising the legal framework for forest carbon projects. This assignment will require the NRCL to collaborate closely with the International REDD+ Policy Adviser.
- SCOPE OF WORK AND MAIN TASKS
The Consultant will work closely with the International REDD+ Policy Adviser to develop and finalise the legal framework on forest carbon projects, including technical guidelines for template/contents of feasibility studies, criteria for acceptance of feasibility studies, templates/contents of agreements with MAF, and reporting mechanisms.
- Study existing and emerging laws and regulations related to the proposal, approval, registration and implementation of REDD+ projects financed by the private sector.
- Collect information on the progress and draft of the PM Decree on Carbon Credits Trading and provide updates.
- Review feasibility study reports submitted by investors and provide comments.
- Review draft Agreements with the MAF proposed by investors and provide comments.
- Improve the draft of the legal framework on forest carbon projects and technical guidelines, both in English and Lao languages.
- Attend meetings and consultations on the draft legal framework and technical guidelines and prepare briefing notes and presentations.
- Finalise legal documents and technical guidelines in English and Lao languages.
- Perform other tasks as requested by the REDD+ Division.
– Report on the analysis of existing and emerging laws relevant to the legal framework on forest carbon projects, including the Investment Law, Environment Protection Law, Property Law and Land Law, and their implementing regulations. The report should clarify the Articles and provisions of these laws and regulations with their legal impacts on the legal framework for the management of REDD+ projects and technical guidelines.
– Monthly reports on the progress and its potential impacts on the legal framework of the forest carbon projects.
– Review reports on the feasibility study reports and draft agreements with the MAF.
– Reports on consultations on drafts of the draft legal framework on forest carbon projects.
– Improved versions and final draft of the legal framework on forest carbon projects and technical guidelines.
- EXPERIENCE, QUALIFICATIONS AND COMPETENCIES
The candidate for the position of National REDD+ Legal Consultant should have the following experience and qualifications:
- At least a bachelor’s degree in law or a relevant field.
- Good expertise and understanding of REDD+.
- A minimum of five years of relevant professional experience in legal aspects of environmental management, forestry, natural resource management, and land or carbon transactions in the Lao PDR.
- Excellent analytical and consultation skills.
- General knowledge of the Lao Government systems and institutions and the environmental finance sector.
- Experience of working in the development or finance sector and working with multi-disciplinary teams.
- Good interpersonal and team-building skills.
- Excellent spoken and written skills in both the Lao and English languages.
- Flexibility and ability to work and deliver high-quality products in a timely manner.
- DUTY STATION AND DURATION
The National REDD+ Legal Consultant will report to the National Project Coordinator, REDD+ Division in Vientiane, Lao PDR. The services of the Consultant are required full-time for an initial period of six months from January 2024 onwards. The Consultant will be based at the REDD+ Division, Department of Forestry in Vientiane Capital, Lao PDR.