Viet Nam News
HÀ NỘI — Vietnamese people can control their own forest resources, ensure food security and diversify their income by using Management Information System for Forest Sector in Việt Nam (FORMIS).
Hà Công Tuấn, Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development made the statement at the forum on information and forest resources database held in Hà Nội on Wednesday by Việt Nam Administration of Forestry (VNFOREST) under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development with the support from the FORMIS phase two project.
“People will be involved in the management and alleviation of poverty by sustainable use of timber and other forestry products, contributing to localities’ economic development,” he said.
The development of the Management Information System for Forestry Sector – Phase II (FORMIS II) project is financed by the government of Finland, the Trust Fund for Forests and the Government of Việt Nam.
Implemented by VNFOREST, the project aims to develop a fully integrated management system for sustainable management of forest resources at maps.vnforest.gov.vn.
The software is free to access. Up-to-date information on forest resources and forest coverage development will be used for decision making in the forestry sector at all levels and for statistical purposes.
The project’s key aims are to create information standards and information sharing mechanisms for the sector, to develop and maintain a centralised IT platform and portal within VNFOREST, to create capacity for forest related information management and to set up a forest information centre within VNFOREST.
Tuấn said this was the most modern software on forest resource database. The software is not only effective for State management and the building of forestry strategy but also useful for future scientific research on forestry development.
The database should be popularised so that data could be fully exploited, he said.
In addition, it should be open source because it didn’t only serve the forestry sector, but other sectors and the whole society can access and use the data, Tuan said, adding that people could evaluate data themselves.
According to Nguyễn Bình Minh, deputy director of the project, the database of forest resources includes national forest inventory data of all 60 provinces with forest coverage, poverty alleviation and results of forest protection efforts.
Data on forest changes would be updated annually by forest rangers from district level. It consists of information on the causes for changes in forest coverage, incidents like forest fires and exploiting activities, he said.
Tapio Leppanen, chief consultant of the project, said the database was the achievement of the whole country.
It was hoped that it would be updated and used effectively and everyone could access the database, he said.
The system would help improve efficiency and cost effectiveness in forest management and planning by reducing the cost of collecting data on forest inventory, he said.
He also said that the openness of the database would help strengthen its feasibility.
Participants at the forum agreed that that the software should be updated and provide accurate information. Therefore, it was necessary to improve the capacity of local officials, information processing and policies for software development, they said. — VNS