2018: Amazon Indigenous Organizations come together at the first ever indigenous economy forum in Lima
In this context, indigenous communities play an important role. According to experts, the least deforested areas in the Amazon overlap with their territories and, for this reason, land security of indigenous peoples is an effective strategy for the conservation of forests. Besides, only 8% of indigenous lands are deforested. Thus, Saweto DGM, an initiative led by the Interethnic Association for the Development of the Peruvian Rainforest (AIDESEP) and the Confederation of Amazonian Nationalities of Peru (CONAP), has been designed with the ambitious goal to conserve forests and strengthen land rights for indigenous communities, aiming to entitle 780 thousand hectares of their lands.
Saweto DGM – an initiative supported by the World Bank and WWF Peru - held the Indigenous Economy Forum “La Selva se mueve”. On its first edition, it brought together 15 indigenous organizations and 6 indigenous undertakings from 10 regions in the Peruvian Amazon. The FEI, which took place on the 15th and 16th of November, was also attended by representatives of the State, international cooperation, indigenous organizations, private companies, universities and NGOs. Among them were: The Ministry of Environment (MINAM), Peru Export and Tourism Promotion Agency (PROMPERÚ), United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Confederation of Amazonian Nationalities of Peru (CONAP), Interethnic Association for the Development of the Peruvian Rainforest (AIDESEP), German Development Cooperation (GIZ), Pontifical Catholic University of Peru (PCUP), and WWF Peru.
“The Indigenous Economy Forum aims to showcase existing opportunities in the Amazon. Thanks to the ongoing trade among Peruvian regions and countries worldwide, the existence of niche markets – comprising from “superfoods” to ecological products -, internet accessibility and the constant development of market alliances, a range of new possibilities open up for indigenous peoples. Through this kind of spaces, we hope to link communities with national and international markets, by promoting the production and commercialization of Amazonian products such as cacao, brazil nut, arapaima fish and others less known like Macambo and Palorosa which have got great potential” said Kurt Holle, WWF Peru´s Country Representative.
The FEI aims to become the first space for joint reflection, as well as the creation and articulation of opportunities and the promotion of alliances to advance strengthening the indigenous economy.