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Final report: AID Regional Forestry Advisor for Asia, January 1982 – February 1985

by Portal Web Editor last modified Jan 10, 2013 09:11 AM
Contributors: Donovan, D. G.

This report reviews the issues and constraints in USAID support to the forestry sector in the less-developed countries of Asia. The report details an upsurge in foreign development assistance to the forestry sector in Asia over the past decade (1975-85) as environmental concerns became more visible. Much of this aid was focused on watershed rehabilitation and development of private or community tree crop resources. An element of local or community participation was central in most of these projects. The author notes, however, that the absorption capacity of host country forestry sectors to new technologies has been relatively low. He attributes this to the lack of previous experience with foreign donor assistance projects, the lack of skilled labor and infrastructure, and poorly developed forestry institutions. Four emerging themes or concerns are social forestry, agroforestry, wood fuel, and watershed conservation. The report also contains a brief overview of the fuelwood and agroforestry sectors in eight of the ten AID Asian countries. The author lists the following as major constraints in AID’s efforts to effectively assist development of the forestry sector in Asia: The limited availability of technical expertise in tropical forestry and especially, forestry experience in tropical Asia; The existence of hidden agenda, such as restrictions on purchasing and hiring, which often impairs efficient and effective project implementation; Poor communications and cooperation between supporting offices at AID headquarters. Recommendations for future AID programs are precipitated by local demand for planning and administrative expertise, including: Forest policy and administration; Research design and management; Forestry extension; Education; Forest industry development.

Author(s): Donovan, D. G.

Location: Asia

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