Implementing timber legality assurance regime in Ghana: a review of stakeholders concerns and current institutional constraints

  • Kwame Antwi Oduro CSIR-Forestry Research Institute of Ghana
  • Victor Kwame Agyeman CSIR-Forestry Research Institute of Ghana
  • Kwame Gyan Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, Accra Ghana
Keywords: Institution, timber legality, log tracking, timber industry, chain of custody


Illegal logging has contributed significantly to slowing the march towards sustainable forest management in Ghana. Illegal logging has been found to thrive in environment where regulatory controls are not adequate. Stakeholders are concerned about the verification of legal compliance for timber harvesting and processing in Ghana. The Government of Ghana initiated the Validation of Legal Timber Programme (VLTP) to enhance the Forestry Commission’s capacity to control illegal logging and ensure production of legal timber. This paper reviews the scope of stakeholders concern and current institutional constraints for legal timber verification in Ghana. The aim is to provide background information as input for a new institutional framework under the VLTP. The review has shown that the current institutional set-up is not suitable for implementing timber legality assurance regime and therefore necessary to instigate a programme of institutional changes. A key element in institutional change is acquiring stakeholder support, which may not be easy when there are employment issues and vested interests at stake. It is essential that a participatory, open and inclusive approach is taken involving all the stakeholders.

Author Biographies

Kwame Antwi Oduro, CSIR-Forestry Research Institute of Ghana

Research Scientist

Victor Kwame Agyeman, CSIR-Forestry Research Institute of Ghana
Kwame Gyan, Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, Accra Ghana
Legal Specialist

Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 0855-1707