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The study reviews the many ways in which forests contribute to economic development in the ECE region, and analyses, on the basis of recent ECE/FAO studies, the outlook and main challenges for the forest sector in the region: wood energy, sustainability of wood supply, the forest sector workforce, payment for forest ecosystem services, innovation, demonstrating and communicating the sustainability of forest management. It concludes that the way forward is to establish forests and the goods and services they provide as an integrated part of the green economy. This is a major opportunity for the ECE region forest sector, which must not be missed. The Action Plan for the ECE region forest sector in a green economy maps out how the sector could rise to the challenges.