Mapping financial flows to support REDD+ efforts in Côte d’Ivoire

  • Year


  • Location

    Côte d’Ivoire

  • Partners

    the Permanent REDD+ Secretariat (SEP-REDD) of the Ministry of Environment and Sustainable Development, 12 Côte d’Ivoire government ministries, the Climate Policy Initiative, UN-REDD programme, IMPACTUM

  • Budget

    EUR 220 000

  • Funded by

    European Union, UN-REDD programme


The EU REDD Facility, together with the Climate Policy Initiative, the UN-REDD programme and IMPACTUM, conducted a study on land-use finance in Côte d’Ivoire to measure progress and identify opportunities to increase funding towards the implementation of REDD+ objectives.

The study, called ‘The Landscape of REDD+ Aligned Finance in Côte d’Ivoire’, comes as Côte d’Ivoire develops a National REDD+ Strategy and Investment Plan to implement zero-deforestation agriculture and forest cover goals.

The objective

The aim of the project is to identify the nature and volume of domestic and international public finance that contributes to reduced deforestation efforts in Côte d’Ivoire. The study provides an insight into the amount and types of financial flows that are directed at sustainable land-use management and reduced deforestation activities, as well as the key actors and activities involved. By analysing land-use finance in this way, the project provides a baseline against which to measure progress towards the levels of investment required to drive zero deforestation agriculture and reforestation. The tool helps to identify channels, gaps and blocks in financial flows, as well as to pinpoint opportunities to increase finance available for implementation of the National REDD+ Strategy.

The challenge

Côte d’Ivoire’s forests have come under significant pressure in recent decades. At current rates of deforestation, Côte d’Ivoire could lose its entire forest cover by 2034, according to FCPF and UN-REDD. Deforestation drivers include the expansion of cash crops such as cocoa, oil palm and rubber as well as logging, mining and wood fuel extraction for cooking. Many of these activities increase the risk of negative climate change impacts and threaten the productivity of the land on which Côte d’Ivoire’s economy depends.

Forest cover objectives have not yet been mainstreamed into Cote d’Ivoire’s national and sectoral development strategies, and so they are not reflected in domestic and development partner spending priorities.

Forests need to become a national planning priority, and greening the hundreds of billions of West African CFA francs (FCFA) spent annually on business-as-usual agriculture in the country could increase productivity without sacrificing the country’s forests.

The Government of Côte d’Ivoire has recognized this opportunity and has begun work on developing a National REDD+ Strategy and Investment Plan to implement zero-deforestation agriculture and forest cover goals.

Workshop on REDD+ finance

The approach

The analysis looked at public finance that went to activities that impact on land use in 2015. These activities are considered to be relevant in the context of Côte d’Ivoire’s National REDD+ Strategy, and include: agriculture, forestry, domestic energy, environment, mining and planning policy. The analysis divided the finance for these REDD+-relevant activities into two groups:

  • REDD+ aligned finance: for activities that directly contribute to reducing the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation and to enhancing and protecting forest cover, in accordance with the objectives of the National REDD+ Strategy.
  • Grey finance: for activities that could contribute to maintaining and enhancing Côte d’Ivoire’s forests if other enabling conditions are in place. These include agricultural intensification activities that may be driving deforestation and require additional safeguards to ensure that forests are not converted.

This analysis is based on 2015 Ministry of Budget disbursed investment data for 12 relevant ministries. International data is based on data from the Ministry of Economy and Finance and survey returns from 10 donors. Data interpretation is based on project descriptions obtained from the Ministry of Planning, as well as expert consultations and workshops.

The landscape of REDD+ aligned finance in Côte d’Ivoire in 2015

Results and impact


  • The study showed that the current level of investment makes up only a small fraction of the expected needs for implementing Côte d’Ivoire’s REDD+ strategy. In 2015, USD 28.1 million of investment by the Ivorian government and its partners contributed to achieving REDD+ objectives. Estimates suggest that more than USD 289 million per year is needed to meet Côte d’Ivoire’s objective to have 20% forest cover by 2030 – but less than 2% of this amount went to reforestation and sustainable forest management in 2015.
  • In 2015, donors spent 55 times more money on agricultural intensification than in the forest sector. This underlines the low levels of investment in reforestation and sustainable forest management and the need to mainstream climate objectives in their land-use investments. Similarly, very little was spent on sustainable domestic energy or sustainable mining.
  • By greening existing agricultural finance from domestic, and especially international sources, Côte d’Ivoire and its partners could deliver over five times more REDD+-aligned finance. In 2015, at least USD 140.7 million of public money was invested in ‘grey’, business-as-usual agricultural intensification which did not explicitly account for deforestation risks and may have contributed to deforestation and forest degradation. This was due to lack of strong land-use planning and secure land tenure.
  • Opportunities exist to raise finance from new sources and improve the effectiveness of existing spending, including through fiscal measures, incentives for local government, and a National REDD+ Fund. Additional domestic sources of finance for REDD+ could be generated by taxing activities that drive deforestation, in particular in the agricultural sector, or by earmarking existing tax revenues.


  • The study highlights the need for forests to become a priority for the Ivorian government and its partners. It demonstrates that means don’t yet match ambition when it comes to zero deforestation and forest restoration objectives, and provides REDD+ stakeholders with a solid basis for conducting advocacy work with government and external partners.
  • Côte d’Ivoire is preparing its REDD+ Investment Plan based on the findings of this study. The Investment Plan will support the gap and needs estimates for the implementation of the REDD+ Strategy.
  • Improved REDD+ finance tracking can help Côte d’Ivoire and partners better plan and coordinate spending. By tracking land-use finance over time, the government of Côte d’Ivoire could monitor the extent to which REDD+ investment needs are being met.



Graphic 1. 2015 investments in reforestation and sustainable forest management versus the estimated annual minimum needs to meet the 2030 target of 20% forest cover.

Graphic 2. This graph shows the level of REDD+-aligned spending by the government of Côte d’Ivoire and its partners in key sectors of the strategy.