1. We, the Ministers and Senior Officials attending the Third APEC Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Forestry in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, on 27 - 29 October 2015:

  2. Acknowledging the 2015 APEC theme “Building Inclusive Economies, Building a Better World’’ and  highlighting the importance of sustainable forest management in achieving long term sustainable socio-economic development in the region;

  3. Noting the discussions at the Third APEC Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Forestry, on topics related to  Building Sustainable and Resilient Communities through focusing on the following key agendas: Supporting Sustainable Forest Management; Forest Conservation and Forest Rehabilitation to Mitigate and to Adapt the Impact of Climate Change; Challenges in Maintaining and Strengthening Efforts to Combat Illegal Logging and Associated Trade, and Private Public Dialogue on Mechanisms, Policies and Best Practices to Attract and Maintain Suitable Investment in the Development of Forests and Forest Resources;

  4. Reaffirming the 2010 Yokohama APEC Leaders’ Declaration, in which leaders agreed to enhance work on meeting the 2007 Sydney aspirational goal on forest cover to instruct officials to take concrete steps to achieve it. Leaders also called for enhanced cooperation pertaining to address illegal logging and associated trade, and promote sustainable forest management and rehabilitation;

  5. Recalling the 2011 Honolulu APEC Leaders’ Declaration, in which leaders further committed to work to implement appropriate measures to prohibit trade in illegally harvested forest products and undertake additional activities in APEC to combat illegal logging and its associated trade;

  6. Recognizing the 2012 Vladivostok APEC Leaders’ Declaration, in which leaders committed to strengthen efforts to combat illegal trade in timber and other forest products; to implement measures to ensure sustainable forest ecosystems management; and to facilitate sustainable, open, and fair trade of non-timber forest products;

  7. Reaffirming the Cusco Statement of the  2013 APEC Meeting  of Ministers Responsible for Forestry to demonstrate our strong commitment to increase forest cover in the APEC region by at least 20 million hectares of all types of forests by  2020;

  8. Building upon the Beijing and Cusco Statements of 2011 and 2013 respectively, and considering the work of the APEC Experts Group on Illegal Logging and Associated Trade  (EGILAT), and the Asia-Pacific Network for Sustainable Forest Management and Rehabilitation (APFNet);

  9. Recognizing the work of  inter-governmental and international organisations and processes in addressing sustainable forest management, combating illegal logging and associated trade, improving forest governance and forest law enforcement, and enhancing trade in legally harvested wood products;

  10. Welcoming the recently adopted forest-related goals and targets in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development;

  11. Acknowledging the progress the APEC economies have made as documented in the Assessment of Progress Towards the APEC 2020 Forest Cover Goal that was prepared by APFNet and FAO;

  12. Recognizing the important role that forests play, not only with respect to the livelihoods of people that depend on forests, but also to the broader global community particularly in mitigating and adapting to climate change,  we aspire to:

    a. Continue to encourage the implementation of tangible actions to contribute to increasing forest cover in the region by at least 20 million hectares of all types of forests by 2020;

    b. Address common gaps and challenges faced in meeting the forestry goals as announced in the Sydney Leaders’ Declaration, Global Objectives on Forests and Sustainable Development Goals;

    c. Encourage APEC economies to share information and best practices through APFNet, and other bilateral and multilateral collaborations to support sustainable forest management, including the promotion of forest cooperation and policy dialogues within or among APEC economies;

    d. Enhance cooperation  among APEC economies through the EGILAT to combat illegal logging and associated trade, promote trade in legally harvested forest products, and build capacity,  building on EGILAT’s development of the Common Understanding of the Scope of Illegal Logging and Associated Trade and the Timber Legality Guidance Template;

    e. Continue working through the EGILAT to share information and best practices on enforcement efforts and policies that are successful in combating illegal logging and associated trade, and promoting trade in legally harvested forest products;

    f. Share experiences and lessons learned on the implementation of tools and mechanisms in order to advance forest governance in the region;

    g. Recognize the importance of cross-sectoral coordination among agriculture, forestry and other land use sub-sectors to achieve sustainable forest management;

    h. Recognize and encourage policies and mechanisms that promote and enhance fair and transparent investment for the development of the forest sector and trade in legally harvested forest products;

    i. Support and encourage educational programs on sustainable forest management and effective forest law enforcement;

    j. Build the capacity of all stakeholders in the forest sector to contribute to sustainable forest management;

    k. Recognize, support and encourage research and development to optimize the full range of values and benefits of forests; and

    l. Recognize the efforts of the private sector in sustainable forest management and support their efforts through appropriate policy frameworks.