ITTO is an intergovernmental organization promoting the conservation and sustainable management, use and trade of tropical forest resources. Its members represent about 80% of the world's tropical forests and 90% of the global tropical timber trade.
ITTO develops internationally agreed policy documents to promote sustainable forest management and forest conservation and assists tropical member countries to adapt such policies to local circumstances and to implement them in the field through projects. In addition, ITTO collects, analyses and disseminates data on the production and trade of tropical timber and funds a range of projects and other action aimed at developing industries at both community and industrial scales. For more information on ITTO's action program go to ITTO at work, or see the Organization's Biennial Work Programme.
Members may submit project proposals to the Council for review and financing in accordance with the ITTO project cycle. Examples include pilot and demonstration projects, human resource development projects, and research and development projects; the Organization's Action Plansets out the types of activities that it should undertake in project and policy work. All projects are funded by voluntary contributions, mostly from consuming member countries. Since it became operational in 1987, ITTO has funded more than 800 projects, pre-projects and activities valued at more than US$300 million. The major donors are the governments of Japan, Switzerland, the USA, the Netherlands and the EU.