The revenue accounts for over 23% of the total agricultural exports this year, the VNFOREST said at a meeting on December 24, adding that the five biggest markets of the US, Japan, the EU, China and the Republic of Korea are the destinations of 87.33% of the country’s forestry shipments.
Noting the fulfilment of all the set targets, the VNFOREST said the forestry sector recorded a 6.12% increase in its production value.
More than 231,520 ha of concentrated forests were planted, 18.7% higher than this year’s target. That has helped expand the forest coverage nationwide by 0.2% from a year earlier to 41.65%.
Meanwhile, the number of forest law violation cases was brought down by nearly 3,580 or 22% from last year. The area of damaged forests was also reduced by 515ha or 35%.
VNFOREST Deputy Director General Pham Van Dien said for 2019, the sector targets a growth rate of 5.5-6% in the forestry production value, and over US$10.5 billion in wood and forestry product exports.
It vows to protect and sustainably develop all the existing forests to raise the nationwide coverage to 41.85%. Meanwhile, it will prevent and handle violations of forest regulations in a timely manner so as to reduce the number of violation cases and the deforested area by at least 10% and 20% from 2018, respectively.
At the meeting, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Nguyen Xuan Cuong said the forestry sector needs to concertedly and drastically implement the Law on Forestry and the Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade Voluntary Partnership Agreement (FLEGT-VPA), which Vietnam recently signed with the EU.
He said the FLEGT-VPA will be a turning point of the sector, stressing that the enforcement of this agreement and the Forestry Law will create a foundation for developing a sustainable forestry economy.