Final evaluation of the Project on UN-REDD Mongolia National Programme

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Evaluation Plan:
2017-2022, Mongolia
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
06/2019
Completion Date:
08/2019
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
35,000

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Title Final evaluation of the Project on UN-REDD Mongolia National Programme
Atlas Project Number: 00086253
Evaluation Plan: 2017-2022, Mongolia
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 08/2019
Planned End Date: 06/2019
Management Response: Yes
UNDP Signature Solution:
  • 1. Sustainable
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2018-2021)
  • 1. Output 1.1.1 Capacities developed across the whole of government to integrate the 2030 Agenda, the Paris Agreement and other international agreements in development plans and budgets, and to analyse progress towards the SDGs, using innovative and data-driven solutions
  • 2. Output 1.4.1 Solutions scaled up for sustainable management of natural resources, including sustainable commodities and green and inclusive value chains
SDG Goal
  • Goal 13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts
  • Goal 15. Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss
SDG Target
  • 13.2 Integrate climate change measures into national policies, strategies and planning
  • 15.2 By 2020, promote the implementation of sustainable management of all types of forests, halt deforestation, restore degraded forests and substantially increase afforestation and reforestation globally
  • 15.9 By 2020, integrate ecosystem and biodiversity values into national and local planning, development processes, poverty reduction strategies and accounts
Evaluation Budget(US $): 35,000
Source of Funding: project budget
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 35,000
Joint Programme: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Michael Richards Mr. richardsem@gmail.com
GEF Evaluation: No
Key Stakeholders:
Countries: MONGOLIA
Lessons
Findings
1.

3.1      Design

3.1.1    Appropriateness of stated objectives and outcomes

The goal, indicator, target and outcomes of the Programme, as set out in Section 1, are appropriate for achieving REDD+ readiness in Mongolia except as regards the following observations:

  • The goal should have excluded the word “implementing” since the scope of the Programme is REDD+ readiness, not REDD+ implementation;
  • Inclusion of results-based payments in the goal was inappropriate for Mongolia given the expectations created: however, this situation was only fully realised after the driver’s report;
  • The target includes “increased support by development partners”; in retrospect it could be argued that if the National Strategy or REDD+ National Program is strictly limited to climate change mitigation this may not be so achievable since support for REDD+ readiness was already as high as could be expected from other donors[1] and donor interest in REDD+ implementation for Mongolia may be limited; however if the National Program is re-aligned to target both adaptation and mitigation objectives as recommended by this report, there appears to be more potential for securing donor support.

See also Section 3.2 for an analysis of the relevance of the Programme as regards national policies, the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the international UN-REDD Programme Strategy.

 


[1] In the form of the GIZ supported Programme “Biodiversity and Adaptation of Key Forest Ecosystems to Climate Change II” and the FAO-GEF project already noted.


Tag: Relevance Implementation Modality Programme/Project Design Project and Programme management

2.

3.1.2    Theory of change analysis, challenges and design gaps

The theory of change of the Programme is that policy, institutional, technical and safeguards readiness for REDD+ implementation (or the Programme Goal) will be achieved as a result of effective delivery, including due to the services of the PMU, of the 18 outputs and four outcomes (represented diagrammatically in Figure 2).

The theory of change of the Programme was further explored in the Evaluation Workshop of 17th October. As shown in Table 2, workshop participants confirmed many of the challenges and problems mentioned in key informant interviews, such as:

  • Time limitations and political instability prevented the first two National Programme Directors (NPDs) from providing coherent leadership (including due to the virtual absence of the second NPD for six months during an important period straight after the MTR), especially with no alternate NPD with decision-making powers (rejected by the second NPD);
  • Weak institutional capacity, including due to job instability and frequent staff turnover in key implementing institutions (DFPC, FRDC and CCPIU), e.g., 15 of 27 FRDC staff are on short-term contracts and have limited time for collaboration on key activities;
  • Language/translation issues that have complicated quality control, weakened the contribution of institutions with less English-speaking capacity, and ultimately weakened ownership;
  • Problems caused by expectations of RBPs in the implementation phase;
  • Weak sustainability of the Forest and Sustainable Development Council (FSDC) or civil society forum;
  • Delays due to changing government regulations (mainly Regulation #49 on the development and format of National Program proposals);
  • Time needed to engage with new concepts or processes, such as REDD+ and/or a national safeguards approach.

 


Tag: Natural Resouce management Sustainability Human and Financial resources Project and Programme management Theory of Change Bilateral partners Country Government Capacity Building

3.

3.2      Relevance

The Programme is relevant and appropriate as regards national policy documents, the Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs), the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the UN-REDD Programme Strategy (with caveats as regards some cross-cutting themes).

Firstly, it is in line with Green Development Policy (2014) which has six strategic objectives, of which two are particularly relevant:

  • Promotes a sustainable consumption and production pattern with efficient use of natural resources, low greenhouse gas emissions, and reduced waste.
  • Sustain ecosystem's carrying capacity by enhancing environmental protection and restoration activities, and reducing environmental pollution and degradation.
  • Secondly, it fits well with Mongolia’s 2015 NDC and the 2011-2022 National Adaptation Plan (NAP) to Climate Change: the NDC specifies a 14% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, and targets increasing the forest area to 9% by 2030, reducing the forest fire affected area by 30%, an increase in protected areas to 20-30% of the total land area by 2030, protection of native ecosystems in river basins, and reduced permafrost melt through forest protection. It also fits well with Mongolia’s 2016 Sustainable Development Vision which emphasises a low carbon pathway and adaptation.

    As regards the Sustainable Development Goals, the Programme can make a valuable contribution not only to the forestry and climate related goals, but also to related goals such as gender equality (SDG5), decent work (SDG8), reduced poverty or inequality (SDG10), strong institutions (SDG16) and partnerships (SDG17).

    The United Nations Development Assistance Framework (UNDAF) 2017-2021 for Mongolia responds to lessons learned from the 2012-2016 UNDAF. The three main outcomes of the Framework are (1) promoting inclusive growth and sustainable management of natural resources; (2) enhancing social protection and utilization of quality and equitable social services; and (3) fostering voice and strengthening accountability. The Programme is therefore most relevant to Outcome 1, and to a lesser extent to Outcome 3. 

    As regards the outcomes and cross-cutting themes of the UN-REDD Programme Strategy, it can be noted that:

  • The Programme aims for broad stakeholder consultation and has made satisfactory progress in implementing a national safeguards approach;
  • There is political agreement on the nature and format of the NS document (in line with Regulation #49) and civil society engagement has been promoted through establishment of the Forest and Sustainable Development Council (FSDC); 
  • The Programme has fulfilled the MRV requirements of the UNFCCC by establishing the NFMS and the FRL has been submitted (and re-submitted following comments) to the UNFCCC in 2018;
  • Forest governance is addressed substantially in PAM number 7; and
  • Gender equity has been advanced since the report on social inclusiveness and gender issues helped inform MET’s Gender Action Plan, and through the Handbook on Gender Responsive and Socially Inclusive Stakeholder Engagement (awaiting approval).
  • However, the contribution of the Programme to some of the cross-cutting themes, such as transparency, participation and rights, has been less clear:

  • Levels of transparency and participation in the definition of the PAMs and development of the NS have been sub-optimal (see Section 4.1.2); 
  • Rights and tenure issues of FUGs do not feature prominently in the current PAM

 


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Emission Reduction Natural Resouce management Relevance Country Government UN Agencies Agenda 2030

4.

Outcome 1: National REDD+ management arrangements established and improved stakeholder awareness and effective stakeholder engagement

Target[1]: Stakeholder awareness is increased significantly by 36 months after inception.

 

 


Tag: Project and Programme management Bilateral partners Country Government

5.

Output 1: A broad-based, multi-stakeholder consultation process developed

Target: National REDD+ Taskforce is established and functional with full representation of all stakeholders by 36 months.

Rating: Moderately Satisfactory.


Tag: Bilateral partners Country Government Capacity Building

6.

Output 2: UN-REDD Mongolia Programme Management Unit (PMU) established

Target: Organise an independent final evaluation of the National Programme by 36 months.


Tag: Communication Ownership Project and Programme management UN Agencies

7.

Output 3: Civil Society Forum established[1]

Target: Civil Society Forum is established and operational, and civil society is satisfied with the framework by 9 months.


Tag: Natural Resouce management Sustainability Civil Societies and NGOs Capacity Building

8.

Output 4: Public awareness raised

Target: Stakeholder awareness raised (confirmed through a mid-term and final survey). This was changed from ‘Public awareness raised’.


Tag: Emission Reduction Effectiveness Project and Programme management Bilateral partners Capacity Building Education

9.

Output 5: Consultation and Participation Plan developed

Target: Implementation of the Plan has commenced and REDD+ consultation materials available by 12 months. 

Achievements: Stakeholder consultation and capacity building has taken place as described under Outputs 1, 3 and 4.

Concern: Key informant interviews revealed that some stakeholders were unaware of the Consultation and Participation Plan, although this may be because it was developed relatively early in the Programme and people had forgotten it. At the Evaluation Workshop, this plan was singled out as an example of an output for which the GoM should have had a stronger lead role. 

Rating: Moderately Satisfactory.
 


Tag: Effectiveness Ownership Bilateral partners Capacity Building

10.

Output 6: Stakeholder Engagement and Operational Guidelines adapted to the Mongolian context (changed from “National FPIC guidelines adapted to Mongolian context”)

Target: This refers to the originally proposed Free, Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC) guidelines.

Achievements: The Programme adopted a flexible approach based on experience from other UN-REDD Programme countries, and taking into account the existence of a set of FPIC guidelines developed by Oxfam for the mining sector. Therefore, it was decided to develop a Handbook on Gender Responsive and Socially Inclusive Stakeholder Engagement and a Training Manual.

Concern: The Handbook has encountered significant delays, mainly due to language/translation issues that have complicated quality control, and was still being finalised at the time of the evaluation. It is mainly oriented to Readiness rather than Implementation, but will be of some benefit in the early stage of implementation (e.g., in relation to the three “enabling PAMs”).

Rating: Moderately Satisfactory.


Tag: Effectiveness Gender Mainstreaming Bilateral partners

11.

Outcome 2: National REDD+ Strategy (or REDD+ National Program) prepared

Target: NS prepared by 36 months.Achievements: Most of the studies and steps required for developing the NS have been undertaken. Concerns: At the time of writing, this is the weakest (and most important) Outcome.


Tag: Human and Financial resources Ownership Project and Programme management Strategic Positioning

12.

Output 7: Barriers to REDD+ identified 

Target: Review and update of drivers study by 24 months.

Achievements: The drivers’ study was undertaken in 2016, followed by an Analysis of Land Use Change (using the Collect Earth tool) (2016), an updated analysis of drivers that appears as an annex in the NFI report (2017) and the Policy, Law and Regulation Review (2018).

Concern:  Some key informants were disappointed with the quality of the 2016 drivers’ report. It was commented at the Evaluation Workshop that there was insufficient capacity building for stakeholders to be able to effectively support the drivers’ analysis.

Rating: Moderately Satisfactory.


Tag: Effectiveness Policies & Procedures Capacity Building

13.

Output 8: REDD+ PAMs identified and prioritised (including demonstration activities to test identified PAMs)

Target: Draft list of PAMs prepared by 18 months.

Achievements: From an initial list of 19 PAMs, 12 PAM topics and sub-activities have been prioritised, of which three are “enabling PAMs” (capacity building, financing mechanisms and management or implementation mechanisms). Some demonstration activities to test PAM #7 have taken place through the FAO-GEF project.


Tag: Resilience building Natural Resouce management Policies & Procedures Capacity Building

14.

Output 9: Options for National REDD+ Funding Mechanism developed (changed from “National fund management and mechanism for distribution of positive incentives designed”)

Target: Proposals for national fund management being reviewed by the public, national authorities and the international community by 22 months.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Natural Resouce management Effectiveness Trade and Development

15.

Output 10: Capacity-building plans developed for key institutions for REDD+ implementation

Target: A capacity building plan is under implementation by 22 months.

Achievement: The Capacity Needs Assessment and Training Plan has been prepared and will be approved by the end of the programme.

Concern:  The main concern is the continuous need for capacity building or training due to frequent staff changes. A failure to follow standard practice in the form of post-event evaluations by participants was rectified by the MTR.  

Rating: Between Satisfactory and Moderately satisfactory


Tag: Effectiveness Capacity Building

16.

Output 11: Gender analysis undertaken to make all outputs of the National Programme gender sensitive

Target: Proposals to mainstream gender approved and implemented by 24 months.

Achievements: The social inclusion and gender report, as well as a policy brief, helped with the updating of MET’s Gender Action Plan, and the Handbook on Gender Responsive and Socially Inclusive Stakeholder Engagement and a related Training Manual (not yet approved by MET) should be valuable resources.

Concern:  The main concerns are the low level of capacity for gender mainstreaming at the provincial/local level, and the limited use of gender-differentiated monitoring indicators.

Rating: Between Satisfactory and Moderately Satisfactory.


Tag: Gender Mainstreaming Policies & Procedures

17.

Output 12 (from Outcome 2): REDD+ social and environment safeguard policy framework developed

Target: Preparation and approval of draft Safeguard Framework by 20 months.

Achievements: Although work on the safeguards component started slowly due to having to wait for a preliminary set of PAMs, most of the necessary steps have been completed, including:

  • Benefits and risks analysis of provisional PAMs, and proposed measures to enhance benefits and reduce risks
  • Review of safeguards-relevant policies, laws and regulations (PLRs)
  • National safeguards clarification
  • Safeguards approach document (prepared)

Concerns:  Some key informants feel that this has proved a time consuming and complicated process for national stakeholders. This was partly due to slow translations of reports.

Rating: Satisfactory.

 


Tag: Environment Policy

18.

Output 13: National REDD+ Strategy prepared through the collation of technical outputs from Outcomes 1-4.

Target: National REDD+ Strategy prepared and in final stages of approval by 36 months.

Achievements: Studies have been undertaken on policies, financing mechanisms, corruption risk reduction, recommendations for the wood-processing industries, fire management, pest control and management and saxaul forest to help determine the technical details of the REDD+ NP. Six Sub-National Action Plans (SNAPs) are expected to be completed. 


Tag: Policies & Procedures Policy Advisory Technical Support

19.

Outcome 3: Forest Reference Emissions Levels (FREL) and Forest Reference Levels (FRL) developed

Target: Nationally endorsed FREL/FRL (no target date given)

Achievements: The main achievement has been efficient preparation of the FRL and its submission to the UNFCCC in January 2018, and following comments, the modified FRL submission sent in June 2018.

Concerns: One concern is that most of the work was done by PMU staff, and institutional participation was not as strong as desirable. Secondly, given the importance of soil carbon in boreal forests Mongolia is currently unable to include soil carbon in the AFOLU data sent to the UNFCCC (see discussion in Section 6).

Rating: Satisfactory.


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Emission Reduction Natural Resouce management

20.

Output 14: Capacity built for the development of FRELs/FRLs

Target: National agreements reached by 18 months.


Tag: Emission Reduction Natural Resouce management Human and Financial resources Country Government Capacity Building

21.

Output 15: FREL/FRL methodologies developed and tested

Target: FREL/FRL submitted to UNFCCC by 30 months.

Achievement: Timely submission of the FRL to the UNFCCC, including through collecting data from 123,000 plots using the Collect Earth tool (following development of a Collect Earth Training Guide). Emission Factors (EFs) were derived from updated NFI data.

Concern:  As expressed above for Outcome 3, the decision not to work on soil carbon in spite of its importance in boreal forests.

Rating: Satisfactory.


Tag: Emission Reduction Natural Resouce management Monitoring and Evaluation

22.

Outcome 4: National Forest Monitoring System (NFMS) and Safeguards Information System (SIS) developed

Target:  One NFMS (no date given)

Achievements: NFMS/MRV capacity has been developed, the forest stock data and map improved. The proposed institutional arrangements for Mongolia’s NFMS have been drafted including data sharing agreements, and guidelines for consistency and transparency in data collection and analysis. Concerns:

  • Lack of a final decision on institutionalization of the NFMS.
  • The challenges of inter-sectoral collaboration (and to a lesser extent inter-donor collaboration) needed for further capacity building and an effective MRV.[1]
  • The need for more field testing of the PAMs so that the FUG-led data collection and monitoring activities piloted in the FAO-GEF project can be scaled up.[2]

Rating: Satisfactory.

 


[1] Although the new FAO-led Capacity Building Initiative on Transparency (CBIT) Programme will tackle these issues.

[2] Field work on this aspect began in October 2018.


Tag: Monitoring and Evaluation Capacity Building Environmental impact assessment Natural Resouce management

23.

Output 16: NFMS and Forest Information System (FIS) development process managed

Target: Forest boundary delineation completed by 36 months.

Achievements: Three SOPs have also been drafted (for the NFI, FIS and FUG-led monitoring) which, once approved will facilitate inter-institutional collaboration and timely reporting to the UNFCCC. FUG-led data collection and monitoring has been piloted and shown to be feasible, and an FUG-led monitoring protocol has been developed; trainings in FUG tenure area delineation; a training plan for FUGs in SFM has been prepared; and the REDD+ Satellite Land Monitoring System (SLMS) geo-portal server housed in the EIC will be used to monitor progress of the NDCs.


Tag: Natural Resouce management Monitoring and Evaluation Capacity Building

24.

Output 17: REDD+ MRV system developed

Target: The NFI methodology is assessed by 24 months.

Achievements: The NFI, which was mainly developed by the GIZ project, has allowed the use of national Emission Factors (EFs) in reporting AFOLU change to the UNFCCC; MRV capacity has been developed in key institutions through multiple training courses on GIS, Collect Earth, SEPAL, etc.; the REDD+ SLMS Portal has been launched; independent assessment of NFI methodology undertaken; guidance document on capacity building of FRDC and a private inventory company for NFI management and reporting. 

Concerns:  The main concerns are:

  • How to retain the expert pool in AFOLU developed by the Programme (state finance limitations mean that there is a worrying reliance on donor projects);
  • The quality of the Saxaul forest inventory data for estimating national EFs;
  • Formalisation of institutional arrangements for the MRV by the end of the Programme (at the Evaluation Workshop it was noted that there is clarity as regards the roles of the CCPIU, FRDC and ALAMGAC).

Rating: Satisfactory


Tag: Environmental impact assessment Natural Resouce management Monitoring and Evaluation

25.

Output 18: Safeguards Information System (SIS) established

Target: The safeguards information is made available to the central database by 30 months.

Achievements: In 2018, SIS objectives were agreed, information systems and sources assessed, indicators proposed, institutional arrangements and SIS architecture proposed, an SIS design document prepared. Even if there is no REDD+ implementation phase, the safeguards framework and an adapted form of the SIS could be very important for an adaptation (+ mitigation) programme with a strong focus on SFM.  


Tag: Environmental impact assessment Natural Resouce management Monitoring and Evaluation

26.

4.2.1    Mongolia’s REDD+ Vision

Mongolia’s REDD+ Vision was discussed by the PMU in late 2016 when the limited potential for RBPs was realised. This led to the PMU proposing to the PEB in December 2016 that Mongolia should change the focus, resulting in the following definition of the REDD+ Vision:


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Emission Reduction Resilience building Natural Resouce management Agenda 2030

27.

4.2.2    Gender and social inclusion

As regard gender equity issues Mongolia has a relatively strong regulatory framework (2011 Law on Promotion of Gender Equality) and made various international commitments. There is also an environmental sector Gender Strategy (2014-2030). On the other hand, there, as reported in the Readiness Roadmap there is a strong gender bias in the division of labour, a highly segmented labour market with differential wage rates, and a prevalence of gender stereotype cultural norms and behaviour.


Tag: Gender Equality Gender Mainstreaming

28.

4.2.3    Capacity building

Most of the issues around capacity building have already been mentioned in Sections 4.1.1 and 4.1.2. The Programme has organized many activities to strengthen skills, raise awareness and enhance understanding, including training based on REDD+ Academy materials in ten aimags. The MTR (2018) made several observations on these capacity-building activities, including that:

These problems have been mainly rectified through implementation of MTR recommendations.


Tag: Natural Resouce management Effectiveness Country Government Capacity Building Education

29.

4.2.4    Normative products

As regards the normative UN-REDD Programme/UN agency tools, PMU members reported that:


Tag: Project and Programme management UN Agencies Capacity Building

30.

4.3Sustainability and scaling up

The key question as regards sustainability is whether the UN-REDD Programme will lead to either REDD+ implementation or an adaptation-oriented programme in accordance with the “REDD+ Vision.” Due to the relatively low potential of RBPs for Mongolia and weak government leadership, REDD+ implementation seems unlikely.  An adaptation programme focusing on SFM would also be more attractive to potential donors. On the other hand, forestry is not a donor priority (among donors engaged in Mongolia). As set out in the financing options study[1] donors may decide that a substantially increased national financial contribution could be made to the forest sector through re-allocation of the current budget, improved revenue collection, earmarking forest revenue, improved economic and policy incentives for private sector finance in the wood processing sector, etc.


Tag: Natural Resouce management Effectiveness Sustainability Ownership Country Government Capacity Building

31.

4.4      Likelihood of impact

Impacts refer mainly to mid- to long-term social and environmental effects, for example, reduced deforestation, improved ecosystem services, poverty reduction, improved gender equity, etc. But these kinds of impact will only be observable in the REDD+ implementation phase. It is possible that the stakeholder engagement activities may have helped strengthen or empower civil society, which could indirectly lead to long-term development benefits, but this is not a strong proposition in this case since the sustainability of FSDC is uncertain.

Based on the comments of key informants, it would require actions beyond the scope of a REDD+ programme, such as significantly increased capacity-building activities, e.g., in organisational development, for CSOs/NGOs to be sufficiently empowered to expect longer term development impacts. 


Tag: Climate Change Adaptation Emission Reduction Ecosystem based adaption Natural Resouce management Impact Gender Mainstreaming Civil Societies and NGOs Capacity Building

32.

5.1      Programme Management and Coordination

The institutional and management arrangements of the Programme are shown in Figure 3. The main implementation agencies (DFPC and FRDC) are under the MET. The PEB was formed to appraise and approve key documents, including annual work plans, budgets and reports, to ensure delivery of the intended results and to address critical issues and risks that cannot be addressed by the DFPC (with the support of the PMU). The Chair of the PEB is the State Secretary of the MET, the Co-chair is the UN Resident Coordinator (UNRC), and the Secretary is the NPD. The PEB includes participating UN agencies, representatives of relevant Ministries and Departments, and civil society representatives (see Annex V).


Tag: Human and Financial resources Implementation Modality Project and Programme management Capacity Building Coordination

33.

Role and performance of UN agencies, including regional backstopping

UNDP, the lead agency, is responsible for overall Programme management, including coordinating the inputs of the three UN agencies. The MTR commented that UNDP “does not have a “team” as such, though this depends on the definition employed. UNDP contracted PMU staff support the coordination of all three agencies activities, and in the final year of the program it is essential that this is improved to ensure that the major elements of REDD+ are linked.”


Tag: Human and Financial resources Procurement UN Agencies

34.

Financial management and administration

The MTR (2018) also assessed financial management and performance. One observation was that on different occasions different disbursement rates were presented to the MTR involving misleading and sometimes conflicting data. It seems that this problem continued to some extent in 2018: UN Environment was firstly informed that the safeguards component was over-spent, but after this situation was questioned, was later advised that there was under-spending.

A significant challenge for financial management, as in other UN-REDD Programme countries, is that each UN agency has different financial management systems including different liquidation categories and procedures on so-called “hard” and “soft commitments”. For example, in the case of UN Environment, when funds are committed, for instance through a contractual agreement with UNEP-WCMC, they are accounted as spent, but this is not the case for the other agencies.


Tag: Efficiency Human and Financial resources

35.

Government ownership and leadership

Government ownership and leadership of the Programme is unsatisfactory, due mainly to political issues and possibly because forestry related work is not regarded as high priority by the GoM. The main problem has been lack of leadership, mainly by the second NPD  combined with not having an officially appointed alternate to be able to make timely decisions. The second NPD in particular was absent for long periods (e.g., between mid-December 2017 and April 2018) and opposed the idea of an alternate with decision-making powers. This resulted in a series of delays which in turn delayed the safeguards work. The MTR also reported that some TWG members seemed insufficiently motivated, and that understanding of REDD+ in the MET and collaborating ministries (e.g., Ministry of Finance and Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Light Industry) has been too weak for people to “buy into”.

 


Tag: Ownership Procurement Country Government

36.

Complementarity support from other-donor supported projects

There have been three donor-supported projects with complementary objectives to the Programme: the GIZ program “Biodiversity and adapation of key forest ecosystems to climate change II” the FAO-GEF project “Mainstreaming Biodiversity Conservation, Sustainable Forest Management and Carbon Sink Enhancement into Mongolia’s Productive Forest Landscapes” and the ADB funded project “Sustainable Forest Management to improve Livelihood of Local Communities.”


Tag: Biodiversity Bilateral partners Donor International Financial Institutions

Recommendations
1

A request should be made for a three-month no-cost extension with the main objective of completing the unfinished readiness agenda so that national capacity to apply for future adaptation or mitigation funding (with a focus on SFM) is strengthened. The priorities are completion of the REDD+ National Program document and development of a donor proposal for work on soil carbon, especially in permafrost layer areas.est should be made for a three-month no-cost extension with the main objective of completing the unfinished readiness agenda so that national capacity to apply for future adaptation or mitigation funding (with a focus on SFM) is strengthened. The priorities are completion of the REDD+ National Program document and development of a donor proposal for work on soil carbon, especially in permafrost layer areas.

2

Given the very strong synergy of the actions needed for both mitigation (or REDD+) and adaptation, amend the REDD+ NP so that it is more in line with the Programme’s “REDD+ Vision” and becomes a REDD+ and Adaptation NP. This would require modified or additional PAMs to increase adaptation capacity in the forest sector, especially as regards livelihood resilience of vulnerable stakeholder groups, including reconciling grazing and forestry issues, and enhancing local institutional capacity. There should also be more emphasis in the PAMs on an enabling policy and regulatory framework for SFM by FUGs, including strengthening rights, and for wood and NTFP processing.

3

The NS/NP should be based on the PAMs and not try and incorporate activities proposed in the six Sub-National Action Plans (SNAPs). The SNAPs should be re-visited after the NS has been approved, and according to whether and when they are needed in the REDD+ implementation stage.

4

Clearer guidance could be provided on the sequencing of national and sub-national planning and good practice as regards the substantive content of NS documents.

5

Undertake a rapid assessment of current data and understanding of the drivers in permafrost layer forest.

6

The requirement of a named decision-making alternate (at all times) to the NPD needs to be explicitly specified in the National Programme Document signed by government.

7

Minimise the number of personnel changes as regards country office focal points, RTAs, CTAs and NPDs.

8

Develop common financial/accounting definitions and procedures, e.g., liquidation categories and procedures on so-called “hard” and “soft commitments”.

9

The length of the in-country evaluation mission should be increased to three weeks or 15 working days.

Management Response Documents
1. Recommendation:

A request should be made for a three-month no-cost extension with the main objective of completing the unfinished readiness agenda so that national capacity to apply for future adaptation or mitigation funding (with a focus on SFM) is strengthened. The priorities are completion of the REDD+ National Program document and development of a donor proposal for work on soil carbon, especially in permafrost layer areas.est should be made for a three-month no-cost extension with the main objective of completing the unfinished readiness agenda so that national capacity to apply for future adaptation or mitigation funding (with a focus on SFM) is strengthened. The priorities are completion of the REDD+ National Program document and development of a donor proposal for work on soil carbon, especially in permafrost layer areas.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/11/02] [Last Updated: 2020/11/27]

Agreed, with following actions to be taken.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Present findings and recommendations of the Final Evaluation to the PEB and request endorsement for no cost extension.
[Added: 2019/11/02]
PIU and TE consultants 2018/11 Completed
if endorsed by the PEB, request no-cost extension from the UN-REDD secretariat.
[Added: 2019/11/02]
PIU, three UN agencies, PEB 2018/11 Completed
Arrange technical backstopping to complete the REDD+ National Programme Document
[Added: 2019/11/02]
UNDP CO 2019/01 Completed Individual consultant was hired to complete the document.
2. Recommendation:

Given the very strong synergy of the actions needed for both mitigation (or REDD+) and adaptation, amend the REDD+ NP so that it is more in line with the Programme’s “REDD+ Vision” and becomes a REDD+ and Adaptation NP. This would require modified or additional PAMs to increase adaptation capacity in the forest sector, especially as regards livelihood resilience of vulnerable stakeholder groups, including reconciling grazing and forestry issues, and enhancing local institutional capacity. There should also be more emphasis in the PAMs on an enabling policy and regulatory framework for SFM by FUGs, including strengthening rights, and for wood and NTFP processing.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/11/02] [Last Updated: 2020/11/27]

This recommends that the REDD+ NP be re-oriented to become a REDD+ and adaptation NP. This is beyond the scope of the NP and the UN-REDD Programme. We provide support to countries in terms of mitigation actions, particularly so in the land-use sector and therefore REDD+. Links can be made with adaptation programmes that a country, in this case Mongolia, would like to / needs to make – but it cannot be a core part of a REDD+ NP as suggested by the evaluators. We therefore disagree with this recommendation as it is not our mandate and beyond the scope of the UN-REDD Programme and the Mongolia NP.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Clarify this recommendation with evaluators via email and skype.
[Added: 2019/11/02]
UNDP CO and RTA 2018/12 Completed UNDP do not agree with this recommendation. Clarification correspondences are documented as annex of the Final evaluation report.
3. Recommendation:

The NS/NP should be based on the PAMs and not try and incorporate activities proposed in the six Sub-National Action Plans (SNAPs). The SNAPs should be re-visited after the NS has been approved, and according to whether and when they are needed in the REDD+ implementation stage.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/11/02] [Last Updated: 2020/11/27]

Agreed to re-visit sub-National Action Plans when REDD+ NP is approved

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Finalize REDD+ NP
[Added: 2019/11/02]
MET and other implementing partners 2018/01 Completed
Validate it at the national level and obtain full political commitments
[Added: 2019/11/02]
NPD, MET 2018/01 Completed Validated REDD+ NP at national forum organized History
Agree on re-visiting the sub-national action plans when REDD+ NP is approved.
[Added: 2019/11/02]
MET and implementing partners 2018/11 Completed The participating key stakeholders reached an agreement to watch and revisit the plan when the Stretegy is approved.
4. Recommendation:

Clearer guidance could be provided on the sequencing of national and sub-national planning and good practice as regards the substantive content of NS documents.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/11/02] [Last Updated: 2020/11/27]

Agreed.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Provide clearer guidance to MET and PIU
[Added: 2019/11/02]
UNDP CO and RTA 2018/01 Completed
5. Recommendation:

Undertake a rapid assessment of current data and understanding of the drivers in permafrost layer forest.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/11/02] [Last Updated: 2020/11/27]

Agreed.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Assess current data and discuss with key informants
[Added: 2019/11/02]
PIU, FAO and UNDP 2018/01 Completed
6. Recommendation:

The requirement of a named decision-making alternate (at all times) to the NPD needs to be explicitly specified in the National Programme Document signed by government.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/11/02] [Last Updated: 2020/11/27]

Agreed

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
This recommendation is shared with the CO team.
[Added: 2019/11/02]
UNDP and Government of Mongolia 2019/01 Completed
7. Recommendation:

Minimise the number of personnel changes as regards country office focal points, RTAs, CTAs and NPDs.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/11/02] [Last Updated: 2020/11/27]

Agreed.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
The recommendation is shared with the UNDP Region and CO teams.
[Added: 2019/11/02]
UNDP and Government of Mongolia 2019/01 Completed
8. Recommendation:

Develop common financial/accounting definitions and procedures, e.g., liquidation categories and procedures on so-called “hard” and “soft commitments”.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/11/02] [Last Updated: 2020/11/27]

Agreed. Noted for future joint projects.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
This recommendation is shared with the CO team.
[Added: 2019/11/02]
UN agencies 2019/01 Completed
9. Recommendation:

The length of the in-country evaluation mission should be increased to three weeks or 15 working days.

Management Response: [Added: 2019/11/02] [Last Updated: 2020/11/27]

Agreed. Noted for future action.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
This recommendation is shared with the CO team.
[Added: 2019/11/02]
UNDP and Government of Mongolia 2019/01 Completed General Note: Overall, UNDP disagrees with the ratings as provided by the evaluation team due to inconsistency in rating of outputs managed by participating UN agencies and the way the evaluation methodology and criteria have been applied across outputs and outcomes. In a number of cases, UNDP considers that outcome level changes were demanded at the Output levels. Moreover, Output ratings were applied between ratings, i.e. Output x is rated as between “Satisfactory” and “Moderately satisfactory”. Despite repeated commenting from UNDP side, these were not sufficiently addressed by the consultants. History

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