Work on 2010 Forest Expansion Plan Sluggish

Rangers nationwide have uncovered over 443,000 cases of violating the law on forest management and protection from 1998-2005.

Viet Nam is currently behind its schedule in the 5 million hectare reforestation program, which aimed at increasing its forest coverage up to 43 percent in 2010, according to a report by the National Assembly’s Standing Committee.

The report revealed that over the past years from 1998 to 2006, plantations have been set up on 1,424,000 hectares, accounting for only 28.5% of the total five million hectares in the nation’s reforestation program up to 2010.

Although the total investment capital in the plantation project has been raised from VND31,650 billion to VND33,000 billion, the quality and quantity of wood supply in the domestic market is still at a low level. Annual wood exploitation at natural forests throughout the country was just 2.5 million cubic meters.

Still, Viet Nam has to import around two million cubic meters of wood yearly from other parts of the world.

Meanwhile, the country's wood output accounted for only 4% of the total production value of agricultural, forestry and aquatic product sector, equivalent to only 1% of the nation’s GDP.

Rangers nationwide have uncovered over 443,000 cases of violating the law on forest management and protection from 1998-2005. The area of destroyed forests and illegal wood exploitation reached over 21,000 hectares while forest fires have destroyed more than 58,700 hectares of forest nationwide.

Pursuant to the Prime Minister’s Decisions 661, which included some major adjustments to the norm of forest natural resources development in the 1998-2010 period, the area for plantation of special-use forest and preventive forest has decreased from two million hectares to one million, and productive forest from three million hectares to two million.

By B.M – Translated by Trong Khuong

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