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Laos, Korea work to save forests
Publication Date : 29-11-2013
The respective forestry ministries of Laos and the Republic of Korea have agreed to work together on making the forestry industry more sustainable.
Lao Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, Ty Phommasak, and Korea's Deputy Minister of Forestry, Kim Yong Ha, signed a memorandum of understanding in Vientiane recently.
The agreement is a further step in building closer cooperative ties between the two governments.
In previous years Korea has had forestry agreements in place with Asean countries and is committed to working with those countries on a range of projects.
Projects have since been successfully implemented and Laos, as a member of Asean, had a role in the process.
Korean businesses are currently investing in planting trees in Laos. The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry is supporting them, as per investment regulations.
Laos is rich in forestry resources. Many Lao people eat and live off natural resources, so sustainable management of the country's forests is a priority in the government's socio-economic development plans.
The new memorandum with Korea is highly detailed and both governments hope it will be a useful example to other countries in the region.
The agreement covers sustainable forest management, biodiversity conservation, reforestation, forestry studies and research, timber processing and improving the skills of technical staff in the industry.
Developing forestry sustainably should benefit the economy and the environment and the new agreement is expected to be welcomed by the industry and other sectors.
Korea has more experience in sustainable forest management than Laos.
The Lao ministry said it would now move to make the commitments it made in the memorandum a reality and arrange for industry sectors to implement the changes. The ministry's Forestry Department will oversee and coordinate the process.