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Draft decree boosts financial support for forest growers

Update: February, 03/2015 - 17:28

HA NOI (VNS) — The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development announced a draft decree yesterday, which will boost forest protection and development by doubling financial support for poor ethnic minorities in forest areas.

The decree will provide mechanisms and policies to encourage forest regeneration and protection and promote and develop non-wood forest products in line with poverty reduction through 2020. Ethnic minority households in the mountainous and rural areas will be the beneficiaries of the decree.

According to the decree, households involved in forest protection will be paid VND400,000 (US$18.8) per hectare per year, doubling the payment from the current level.

Those committed to forest regeneration will be given VND1 million ($47.1) per hectare per year within six years for low-intensity efforts, and VND2 million ($94.3) per hectare per year within the first three years and VND1 million for the next three years for more intensive projects.

For planting a forest, an individual can earn VND10 million ($471) per hectare if the forest has trees that are more than 10 years old, and VND6 million ($282) per hectare for trees that were planted less than a decade ago.

These households will also be granted additional support, such as a supply of rice and favourable interest rates for bank's loans.

At a meeting to discuss the draft decree yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Vu Van Ninh, said the protection and development of forests is one of the measures being adopted for achieving sustainable poverty reduction.

However, the draft regulations should benefit all the people living in the mountain areas.

He added that the draft resolution should encourage residents to make full use of forest land for developing production and livestock by offsetting interest costs through bank loans.

Deputy PM Ninh added that the rate of poor households in remote areas has fallen by over 5 per cent annually. However, that percentage of ethnic minorities remains as high as 50 per cent.

At the conference, participants approved the issuance of the decree and also suggested raising the number of beneficiaries to include the Kinh people, who also live in disadvantaged areas. — VNS

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