The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has launched a project worth VND28trn (USD1.2bn) to protect forests in the Central Highlands.
VND28trn to be spent on forest protection
On May 24, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development held a meeting about the sustainable forest development plan for the Central Highlands during the 2016-2030 period. The goal is to raise the forested area in the Central Highlands to 2.72 million hectares by 2030.
The plan also aims to better manage and protect the forest and the biodiversity in the Central Highlands, prevent deforestation and contribute to the local economic-socio development.
Cao Chi Cong, deputy head of the General Department of Forestry, said as of 2018, the total forest land in the Central Highlands was 2.5 million hectares. They also have to face many violations. In the first four months of 2019, the authorities recorded 1,185 violations, a decrease of 247 cases compared to the same period last year, but the total destroyed forest land increased by 46.59 hectares to 255.27 hectares.
"Lam Dong has a high rate of forest cover but it is also struggling to deal with drivers of deforestation and forest degradation. We have worked with the authorities and local people to raise awareness and join hands to protect the forests," said Nguyen Van Son, director of Lam Dong Department of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Ha Cong Tuan, deputy director of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said the Central Highlands is a strategic region. Its forested land accounts for over 46% of the region's area. But from 2010 to 2015, the Central Highlands saw the fastest rate of deforestation in the country.
The forest area decreased by 5.8% and the forest reserve decreased by 7.8% as violations were rampant in Central Highlands. Tuan urged the authorities in the Central Highlands to adopt plans to develop and protect their forests.
The sustainable forest development plan for the Central Highlands during 2016-2030 period is estimated to cost VND28.5trn (USD1.2bn) of which VND7.8trn will come from the state budget, VND3.7trn from ODA budget and the remainder from the private sector.