GMFA President, V.F. Pominov, visits the IMFNS

Russia's Gassinski Model Forest was established in 1994 under an agreement between the governments of Canada and Russia. The agreement included a "twinning" arrangement between British Columbia's McGregor Model Forest Association (MMFA) and the Gassinski Model Forest Association (GMFA). Although that agreement has now lapsed, the two Model Forests continue to collaborate in a number of areas -- local-level indicators and economic development are the most prominent. That relationship brought the GMFA president, Mr. V.F. Pominov, to Prince George, B.C., this summer and gave the IMFNS and GMFA an opportunity to arrange meetings in Ottawa to discuss the future.

Over two days of discussions in Ottawa this past June, IMFNS and GMFA agreed on a number of priority actions for the coming year, including the translation into Russian and the dissemination of Model Forest documentation, greater development of the GMFA Web site (www.gassi.khv.ru), and agreement on GMFA participation at the October Model Forest events in Japan's Yamanashi and Akita Prefectures. 

Given the GMFA's recent economic development successes, the IMFNS has agreed to co-sponsor a conference in May 2001 on the topic of Economic Development and Diversification within the Natural Resource Sector: the Model Forest Approach. The focus will be on the Russian experience, but it is hoped that international participants with an interest in this theme will also attend. The first announcement for the event should be circulated in early 2001.