Priorities Setting In Forestry

For the forestry research system – while it is considered that there are more-or-less enough researchers in the system, there are still many gaps in quality (researcher capacities) and comprehensiveness of the research system. For example, there are gaps in basic research on forest flora and fauna, forest hydrology, and forest ecology etc. Even for aspects which are considered quite effective such as silviculture technologies, the lack still appears in terms of the number of researchers, especially leading researchers for deep and specific research areas. The gap between different researcher generations and inconsistent quality are big challenges.

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PRIORITIES SETTING IN FORESTRY (CARD workshop on research priority setting in Hoa Binh 12-2010) __________________________________________ Trieu Van Hung & Do Xuan Lan Department of Science Technology and Environment MARD 1. INTRODUCTION Science and Technology is defined by the Vietnamese Party and Government as an important motivation for socio-economic development. As a result, the requirements and demands of the society in the future (up to 2020) towards the forestry sector are increasing regarding the function of environmental protection, tourism and culture, biodiversity conservation and contribution to the national economy. To support the current socio-economic development in Vietnam, scientific research in general and in forestry in particular should be promoted. Thus far, a number of research works on various types of forests, especially on forests and environment protection and biodiversity are implemented by research agencies in the forestry sector and by other research agencies from other sectors. However, as there has been no long-term orientation or plan for research activities, the effectiveness of this research is not yet conjoined with the development situation. Thus, a strategy for forestry research to 2020 aims towards: "A modern and improved forestry science and technology foundation is developed to the regional level, contributing to satisfying social demands in sustainable forestry development in the fields of socio-economic and environment which are in accordance with Sect oral Development Strategy and National Development Strategy". This paper outlines past achievements, future opportunities and potential capacity in forest research and serves as resource material to assist participants of the agriculture sector priorities setting workshop to assess research potential and capacity in forestry - one of the focus sub-sectors. 2. CURENT STATUS OF THE FORESTRY SECTOR IN VIETNAM Forestry is a specific technical economic sector, including all activities connected with commodity production and services from the forest, such as reforestation / afforestation, harvesting, transportation, production and processing of forest products, and providing environmental services related to forests. The forestry sector plays a very important role in the protection of the environment, biodiversity conservation, and poverty reduction, particularly for people in the mountainous areas, and contributes to social stability and to national defense security. As of 31 December 2009, the country’s forest area is 13.26 million (mil.) hectares (ha) including about 10.34 mil. ha of natural forests and 2.92 mil. ha of plantations, equivalent to 39.1% of forest coverage. The area of production forest is 6.29 mil. ha, protection forest 4.83 mil. ha and special used forest 2.0 mil ha Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  2 At the national scale, substantial progress has been achieved in forest protection and development, which has prevented the degradation of both forest area and quality, resulting in the increase of forest area from 11.73 mil. ha in 2005 to 14.17 mil. ha in 2010 (increasing, on average, 0.48 mil. ha each year). At present, an average of more than 200,000 ha of forests have been planted annually. Plantation–based timber harvesting yields reached 3.0 mil. m3 in year 2010, aimed to provide materials for export–based forest product processing and domestic consumption. The timber and forest product processing sector has gained outstanding progress, which gradually meets domestic demands, contributing substantially to export turnover and creating opportunities for development of material plantations. The value of forest-products–based export turnover has increased from 1,570 mil. USD in 2005 to 3,233 mil. USD in 2010. Production operations of the forest sector have been changing remarkably from state– owned forestry with centralized planning to socialized forestry, which allows a multi– stakeholder economic structure and follows market economy mechanisms. Thus, the forest sector has been actively involved in employment creation and livelihood improvement for nearly 25% of the Vietnamese people who live near forest and mountainous regions, thus contributing to the assurance of social and political security and the creation of a driving–force for the overall development of the country in recent years. Although the forest area is increasing, the quality and biodiversity of the natural forests have been continuously reduced. In many locations, forest areas have been increasingly damaged; meanwhile, production plantations under the 661 Program have not met the expected objectives. The forest sector’s growth is low and unsustainable. It is low in profit, weak in competitiveness, and the potential of forest resources has not been properly and comprehensively exploited, particularly for non-timber forest products (NTFPs) and environmental services. 3. FORESTRY RESEARCH IN VIETNAM - PAST PERFORMANCE 3.1. Constraints in Forestry Research in Vietnam Based on the development of forestry research in Vietnam in recent years, we can identify the following constraints: • Lack of strategy in research directions and themes: Not much attention is paid to sector development forecasts to identify the orientation for research activities in each period. A Science and Technology Research Strategy for the Sector is developed, but not correctly implemented in the reality and it is still difficult to define research directions and themes. The development of research plans are not consistent with characteristics and requirements of forestry research: the production and business cycles of forest trees are long but a research at sectoral level lasts only 2 – 3 years and perhaps 5 years for research at the national level. • Insufficient information: There is a lack of information, especially information obtained from actual production, from other countries and market information etc. This has resulted in irrelevant selection of research themes and identification of objectives, which has affected research results. Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  3 • Lack of inter-disciplinary and systemization: Research contents lack inter-disciplinary and systemization and pressing issues of production practice have not been synchronously resolved. There are big gaps in research, such as in baseline research to develop new technical methods, and new technologies; in research on forest resources and forestland management; in research on organisation and management of forest employment; in research on marketing of forest products; and in research to apply foreign advanced technologies. • There is a lack of motivation for research, and little application of advanced technology in production due to a lack of competition. Current policies do not encourage and promote research activities, and the benefits are not attractive enough to keep competent researchers in the forestry sector. • Lack of researchers and weak capacity: The effectiveness of the work of research is not very high because there is no synchronicity and no close links between scientists and researchers at different levels. There is also a lack of up-scaling from previous research results. During the process of transferring into a market-oriented economy and with forestry shifting into social forestry, researchers have not been equipped with relevant knowledge, which has resulted in insufficient research results. • There is no close cooperation among researchers and research establishments, and between research and propagation, production and training at the initial stages of planning. Research design thus far has not required much involvement of the end-users. Science and technology programmes and socio-economic programmes are not closely linked together. Economic effects of research activities and technology transfer has not been appropriately coupled. • Poor research conditions: Equipment, laboratories and sites, etc. have not met the requirements of research activities. Forests for research and experimental activities are not well managed. Research establishments are still subsidized by the government and not active and creative. • Limited budget for research activities: Before 1999, investment in research was less than 1% of GDP. Total investment in forestry research accounts for approximately 1.5% of the total investment in research and implementation in the whole country, still a very small figure. Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  4 3.2. Forestry Research Trends Based on the identified constraints and achievements in Forestry Research in Vietnam in the last years, the main important trends can be identified (see also figure 1): • Formerly, forestry research activities were mainly concentrated on investigation and assessment of forest resources for exploitation and utilization. These days, awareness of the values of the forests, especially indirect values, has been further improved, which had led to wider ranges in forestry research activities in order to develop a sustainable forestry sector with multiple purposes. • Research activities on the effective use of barren land areas and extensive forest plantation have a high priority due to concerns with satisfying the demands for materials in processing industry (paper, plywood). In macro land use planning the barren land areas which cannot be used in agriculture cultivation will be the object of forest production. Forest exploitation will be reduced because of dramatic degradation of natural forests. Later natural forest gates will be closed as per the intention of the Government. • In the past, forestry research was concentrated in individual sectors, and focused on natural and technical aspects. In the course of future development, forestry research will be more Figure 6: Overview of main trends, constraints and achievements identified in Forestry Research  in Vietnam  Identified constraints on forestry  research:  • Lack of strategy  • Insufficient information (international,  market)  • Lack of interdisciplinary and  systematization  • Lack of competition / motivation  between researchers  • Limited capacity researchers  • Lack of cooperation between Identified achievements on forestry  research:  • Baseline surveys  • Silvicultural techniques  • Tools and techniques in forest industry  • Land potential assessments  • Forest plantation  • Forest resource preservation and  forest protection  • Seeds and Biotechnology  • NTFP Important trends based on identified constraints and  achievements in forestry research:  • Forestry research includes social, economic and  environmental values of forestry   • Effective use of barren land areas for extensive  forest plantation  • Inter sectoral and multidisciplinary approach  • Increase of international relations and Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  5 characterized by inter-sectoral and multiple sectors which will focus on socio-economics, mechanisms and policies, aiming at shifting from State forestry into social forestry or into community forestry. • Alongside with the Government's open policies, international relations in forestry research are expanding at a larger scale, with varied cooperation activities, which contribute to improved capacity and to raising the reputation of forestry research in the region and in the world. 3.3. Major achievement As stated in the Forestry Research strategy, the main achievements of the forestry research over the last 10 years are: 1. Baseline survey: The results from the observation of forest resources are used to make a baseline survey that is released every 5 years. This survey creates important data for the building of socio-economic development plans and development plans of the sector. 2. Silviculture techniques for natural forests: Thorough research on many different forest types has been carried out (such as on Pinus spp. forests, dry open dipterocarp forests, mangrove forests, natural deciduous forests etc.) on the ecology, forest structure, forest dynamics, and impact techniques. The scientific basis for forest rehabilitation and regeneration have been identified for forest enrichment and forest improvement, which have resulted in good yields of two- or three-fold higher. 3. Forest plantation: Land potential has been assessed in order to identify relevant uses. Extensive forest plantation techniques were developed in order to improve the yields and quality and shorten the felling cycle of trees to provide material for the paper and plywood industry, such as for Styrax tonkinensis, Manglietia spp., Pinus merkusii, Pinus massoniana, Pinus kesiya, Techtona grandis, Acacia mangium, hybrid acacia and Eucalyptus spp. etc. The expected annual yield is 25-30m3 per hectare. Forest plantation techniques for indigenous and imported trees were also developed for such trees as Pinus merkusii, Pinus mossonia, Techtona grandis, Michelia spp, Hopea spp., Erythrophloeum fordii, Aglaia silvestris, Cinnamomum spp. etc. Protection forests were planted in watershed areas or coastal areas to prevent sand storms and sea waves with such species as drought resistant eucalyptus, acacia, Melia spp., mangrove species etc. 4. Seeds and tree improvement: Research on seeds has included research on selection, species trials, provenance trials, prominent tree selection, progeny tests, cross breeding, new species trials and local imported species in different land areas and climates and also for different forest plantation aims. High value nurseries and nursery forests have been created. The scientific basis for seed supply has been improved in the whole country. Forty species have been proved to be appropriate for advanced breeding techniques and about 60% of seedlings have been improved for forest plantations. 5. Achievements in applying biotechnology: Silviculture and propagation techniques have provided high yields and quality seedlings such as Acacia mangium, Acacia hybrids and Eucalyptus Urophylla, which help to provide seedlings for the five million hectares afforestation program, especially for forest plantation for paper materials and plywood production. Propagation techniques has helped to produce casuarinas and some other species for coastal protection forest plantations. Research has also used molecular markers to create interventions into the gene to select some species such as Acacia, Eucalyptus, Chukrasia etc, and some alleles have been identified for some species which have been certified. Eucalyptus experimentation has included applying interventions into the gene which has resulted in lignin changes. Finally, there has been research on using Mycorrhiza fungi in eucalyptus and pine forest plantation; using Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  6 Rhizobium and Bradyrhizobium fungi for legume; and using Frankia fungi for casuarinas and Bouveria fungi to produce pesticide to fight against pine caterpillars etc. 6. Forest resources preservation: Research on natural conservation and gene preservation has been very important. A red book was issued with the list of precious and rare animal and plant species that need to be protected; Nature Reserve areas have been established nationwide. Some protected areas were established to protect precious and rare species. Plant collection areas and ex-situ conservation areas were formed in various regions of the country. 7. Forest protection: Research has focused on identifying the causes of infestation and ways of preventing pests and diseases; applying biological methods in detecting pests; producing biological finished products such as Beauverin and Bacillus, red eye bees etc; and anticipating risks of forest fires for each region and suggesting solutions . 8. Forest industry: Research has contributed in the improvement of tools and equipments for timber and forest products exploitation, loading, hauling, and transportation. Concentrated exploitation areas have been mechanized. Research has also focused on finalizing and applying exploitation, restoration and processing technologies for timber taken from planted forests. Other examples of research on this topic are: - Research on technology transfer of wood and bamboo-chipping machines, improved fuel stoves etc.; - Applying timber drying techniques to produce artificial planks; - Producing various products from salvaged wood and timber taken from planted forests; - Using timber of planted forests instead of natural forests; 9. Non-timber forest products: Research in this area has focused on promoting production and cultivation of NTFP species such as: rattan, bamboo, cinnamon, star anise, pine resin, agarwood, medicinal plants, etc. There have been studies on using stimulating agents to increase the yields of pine resin and developing processing technology on small scales to ensure close links with marketing. 10. Economy, policy, and social forestry: Research in this area has focused on developing participatory social forestry models in different ecological and economic settings in order to settle the conflicts between the demands of food security and forest protection and development. Studies have assessed the implementation of policies and have given proposals for refinement of policies in forest management and development such as forest and forestland allocation, fixed cultivation and resettlement, etc. 3.4. Contribution of research to forestry sector development Achievements in forest research have contributed significantly to development of the national economy in general and the forestry sector in particular. Most important achievement in forestry science may be referred to seed and seedling production and improvement. For the last 10-15 years, as results of the researches carried out by Vietnamese foresters have selected more than 120 new and technically advanced forest trees varieties including Acacia, Eucalyptus, Pinus of various types having high productivity and quality, high capacity to resist disadvantageous conditions. It contributes to the fact that more than 60% areas under new forest plantation are established by using new forest trees varieties. At present, foresters manage with tissue culture in combination with cutting to produce planting materials of eucalyptus, acacia and other trees. This technology is developed and can be applied in various scale of household level or industrial. The technologies have been transferred to many nurseries throughout the country. Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  7 Forest research helped to identify main forest tree species commonly used in forest plantation establishment, forest land classification and land suitability for different forest tree species in various eco-zones. Forest research activities have also contributed significantly to improving seeds and planting materials quality of NTFP. The Research on seeds has included selection, species trials, provenance trials, prominent tree selection, progeny tests, cross breeding, new species trials in different land areas and climates and also for different forest plantation aims. High value nurseries and nursery forests have been created. The scientific basis for seed supply has been improved in the whole country. Forty species have been proved to be appropriate for advanced breeding techniques and about 60% of seedlings have been improved for forest plantations. Experimental plantations of indigenous trees such in different ecological zones have also been conducted. Developed more than 20 procedures, instructions and planting techniques, about care of forest for timber production, non-timber forest product and protections forests. 15 proposed drug storage and drug prevention and forest products have a good effect, safe environment. Identify the value of forest resources in some form of forests, making rules, the method of determining a base of national forests issued Decision No. 380/QD-TTg pilot policy on payment of forest environmental Notably, recent studies, trials of Macadamia trees in some northern and central highlands provinces has produced very promising results. The plant native to Australia grown for seeds, has high value with 78% fat, 10% sugar, 9.2% protein and micronutrients such as K, P, Mg. In 2010, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has recognized four clones of Macadamia (OC, 246, 816, 849) as suitable for planting in Krong (Dak Lak) and where similar conditions exist, these non-timber trees were first recognized as a variety of technical advances. The recognition of these variety yields from 4.8 to 7.1 kg per tree per year for 5-6 years old trees in Dak Lak, the higher yield of plants of the same age in Hawaii is 3.0 to 5, 0 kg / tree / year and is considered the world's highest Tissue culture techniques that became popular to create high quality and uniform seedlings for forest plantation. The plantation yield has increased significantly, from to 8-10 m3/ha/year in the 1990s to 20-30 m3/ha/year. The Vietnamese forest researchers have also built a computer program for management and monitoring of forests and forest lands allocated to farmers and community based on information technology and GIS techniques; Classification of lands assigned to afforestation at micro level for three species of Acacia hybrid, Acacia mangium and Eucalyptus Urophylla that contribute to rational land use, increase of forest productivity and high environmental protection value. Analyzed the impact of policies to wood and wood products market; Determining the value of direct and indirect use value of three types of forest as protection, special use and production forests in Southern East; Developed instructions and method for quantifying forest environment service value of forests as the basis for the monetization of the value of forests, contributing to changing perceptions about the value of forests. Because of the long business cycle of forest trees, the forestry research needs a long time to be effective. This is the biggest challenge in building strategy of forestry research. On that basis, the current programs / forestry research is designed slightly longer than the other sector, usually from 3 to 5 years. On the other hand, at present in MARD, some research programs have been built on the cycle basis, such as establishment and data collection in permanent sample plots. However, with the application of scientific achievements in basic research in biology (biotechnology, cell technology, etc.) has shortened some stages of forestry research, contributing quickly introduce the research results into actual production. Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  8 The rapid development of timber processing in recent years has resulted in high demands for research and technological development as well as vocational training. The result was the most active links in the system of research, training and popularization of the processing industry. Clearly, this is an area with potential to promote closer links and "business partners" dynamic between processing facilities and research institutions in the future. The Forestry Extension Organisation plays an important Role in introduction of research results and advanced technologies for production. However, there is a lack of close and effective cooperation between research, extension and production units. Number of forest trees varieties recognized increase significantly resulting from continuous efforts from the previous investment both in scientific research and finance. More attention has been paid to producing high quality seeds for reforestation, afforestation, especially for production forest plantation by seeking various funding sources from non-state budgets. These efforts help encourage researches in forest trees breeding. Quality of seeds and seedlings used in forest plantation get improved, the rate of good seeds used increase. Technology for seed production by tissue - cuttings were widely popular. Year Number of forest seedlings certified, mil. Number of new varieties certified 2005 125.2 0 2006 195.9 8 2007 283.1 0 2008 337.9 8 2009 328.6 15 Number of scientific researches approved and put into application Year Total Silviculture Forest Industry Policy- Economics 2005 40 26 13 1 2006 34 12 22 0 2007 20 9 5 6 2008 28 20 6 2 2009 24 13 9 2 The number of scientific researches in the period has been reduced partly for more focused investment. 4. FORESTRY DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY TO THE YEAR 2020 4.1. Objectives to 2020 Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  9 • To sustainably establish, manage, protect, develop and use 16.24 million ha of land planned for forestry; • to increase the ratio of land with forest up to 42 – 43% by the year 2010 and 47% by 2020; • to ensure a wider participation from various economic sectors and social organizations in forest development, • to increase their contributions to socioeconomic development, environmental protection, biodiversity conservation and environmental services supply, • To reduce poverty and improve the livelihoods of rural mountainous people, and to contribute to national defense and security. 4.2. Economic tasks - The rate of forestry production growth (including forest products processing industry and environmental services) will be from 4 – 5%/year. Efforts will be made to increase the forestry sector’s contribution to the national GDP to 2 -3% by 2020. - 8.4 million ha production forest should be managed sustainably and effectively. The area of regenerated natural forest and agro-forestry area is 0.62 million ha. Efforts will be made to get forest certification of 30% of the production forest areas. (Those areas will be assessed and issued certification for meeting sustainable forest management standards.) Appropriate planning, management and effective use of the protection forest system, of approximately 5.68 million ha, and 2.16 million ha of special-use forests. - 1.0 million ha of new plantation will be established by 2010 and 1.0 million ha for the next phase. 0.3 million ha/year will be reforested after harvesting. Zoning for regeneration of 0.8 million ha of forest. Scattered tree planting: 200 million trees/year. - Domestic harvested timber volume will be 20-24 million m3/year (including 10 million m3 large timber), basically meeting the demand of raw material for forest products, pulp processing industry and export. - Fuel wood harvest for the rural areas will be maintained at a level of 25-26 million m3/year. - Forest products annual export values will increase to over USD 7.8 billion (including USD 7 billion of timber products and USD 0.8 billion from export of NTFPs). - Annual revenue from forest environmental values will increase, reaching USD 2 billion by 2020, through clean development mechanism (CDM), ecotourism, erosion control, water sources protection, etc. 4.3. Tasks for solving social problems - Generate more jobs for forestry laborers (including timber and NTFP processing sector and traditional art handicraft villages); - Improve income, contribute to poverty alleviation and reduce by 70% the number of poor households in key forest areas; - Complete allocation and lease forests and forest land to organizations, enterprises, households, individuals, and communities, before 2010. - Increase the number of laborers receiving vocational training up to 50%, with special focus on ethnic groups, poor households and women in remote and isolated areas. 4.4. Tasks for securing environmental stability Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  10 - Forest protection, natural protection and biodiversity conservation are aimed to effectively contribute to watershed, coastal and urban protection, natural disaster mitigation, erosion control, protection of water sources and environmental protection, and to create income sources from environmental services (environmental fees, CO2 market, ecotourism, etc.) for the national economy. - Forest cover will be increased to 42 - 43% by 2010 and to 47% by 2020; - 0.25 million ha of protection and special-use forest will be planted by 2010. - Forest-related violations will be minimized. Slash-and-burn cultivation should be limited on forest land. 4.5. Solutions on science and technology - Scientific technological research activities need to meet the production and market requirements while involving participation of forest owners and enterprises. - Develop and implement the Forestry Research Strategy for the period 2006-2020 with a focus on break-through research within the sector, such as on biotechnology, technology for refining NTFPs, high-yielding afforestation, improvement of poor natural forests, etc. - Develop and implement the 2006-2020 forest tree seed and seedling strategy in order initially to meet demands for high-quality seeds and seedlings used for afforestation under the Project 661 and other programs and projects. - Develop and implement the National Strategy on NTFP Development and Conservation during the period 2006-2020. - Establish national standards for sustainable forest management and Chain of Custody (CoC); develop national standards for wood and NTFP products. - Strengthen equipment and technical facilities for research organizations. Promote the application of modern and environmentally–friendly technologies and equipment for forest product processing and production. Foreign investment should be considered as a modern technology transfer channel. - Forestry extension organizations are established from central level to provinces and districts having a large area of forest (provinces with more than 50,000 ha of forests and forest land). Develop voluntary forestry extension organizations for the communes and villages, particularly in remote, isolated areas, where it is difficult for the state agricultural system to access. The State should provide the necessary support for voluntary organizations working in forestry extension. - Renovate the activities and capacity-strengthening for forestry institutes, universities, and schools to become qualified consultancy organizations meeting the requirements of forestry sector. Establishment of technology transfer centers, scientific technological consultancy centers and intensive training centers under research and education institutions is encouraged. Mechanisms will be developed for research, training and forestry extension institutes to increase their self-responsibility and independence concerning the quality and quantity of outputs. - Develop and implement a training strategy and improve capacities for forestry staff at all levels, particularly at the commune level. Focus on training and forestry extension activities for the poor, particularly ethnic minorities and women, and training for forestry staff in remote, isolated areas. Pay attention to forestry extension training and education activities for the poor. - Enhance management capacities for management staff, enterprises, communities and households working in forestry through on-site short courses and forestry extension to assist them in developing, implementing and monitoring forest protection and development plans gradually. - Improve capacities and technical facilities of forestry training units. Encourage domestic forestry training and extension organizations, NGOs and international projects to support training and extension activities. Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  11 - Develop planning and provide opportunities for intensive training to scientists and senior teaching staff in different fields of forestry, with a particular focus on forest economics, and create favorable conditions to attract young researchers to be involved in scientific research and teaching. 5. THE FORESTRY RESEARCH PRIORITIES IN THE PERIOD OF 2011-2015 5.1. Research Priority in the Period of 2011-2015 Based on the Forestry Development Strategy for Vietnam in the period 2006-2020 and development strategy of science and technology approved in 2010, the research priorities in forestry sector are identified by fields and divided into 3 priority levels as high, medium and low priority. The research priorities are arranged in six fields: 1) planning, monitoring and evaluation of forest and forest resources, 2) institutional policies and forestry; 3) Sustainable Forest Management; 4) Forest Environment and Biodiversity; 5) Forestry and silviculture (natural forests, planted forests, non-timber forest products); 6) forest industry, storage and processing of forest products. a. Planning, monitoring and evaluation of forest and forest resources, including: + Forest and forest land use planning at macro and micro level; + Research and application of advanced science in technology for monitoring changes in forest resources. + Building a system indicator to assess and monitor forest resources. b. Forestry Institutional policies, including: + Predicting trend in forestry development for each period (demand, market, supply capacity); + Reviewing practice and evaluating the implementation of existing mechanisms, policies and programs/projects. Based on that to propose solutions, the new policies on forestry, including socialization of forestry, land and forests allocation; mechanisms and policies on benefits sharing, investment, credit and environmental services of forests; the role of forests in poverty alleviation and contribution of the sector in the national economy. + System of state management in forestry, the system of economic and technical norms for forest sector + Forestry Development in the market mechanism. c. Sustainable forest management, including: + The type of management and development of forests. + The methods of sustainable forest exploitation and use, including natural forests and plantations. + Develop national standards for sustainable forest management. d. Forest Environmental services and biodiversity, including: Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  12 + Forests for environmental protection, climate change and disaster prevention. Protection capacity of these forests. + Evaluating the value of forests on environment and landscape; + Biodiversity of natural forests and improve forest biodiversity. + Research on conservation and use of genetic resources of animal species, rare native plants. + Development of urban forestry. e. Forestry and silviculture, including: + Natural forest: characteristics of main natural forest ecosystems in Vietnam; system of silviculture techniques to improve the quality of degraded natural forests under intensive cultivation; sustainable forest harvesting techniques and restore natural forests after harvesting. + Plantation: the scientific basis to identify key economic species for different ecological zones, improved varieties of major crops (productivity, quality and tolerance); intensive plantation production (small and large timber); scientific basis and techniques for constructing protection forests. + Non-Timber Forest Products: + Forest Products: Assessing NTFP resources, exploitation and sustainable development of NTFP at household and farm scale; planting, processing and preservation of valuable species of forest products. f. Forest industry, storage and processing of forest products, including: + Build a database on the properties of wood and NTFPs in Vietnam; + Assessing development potential of raw wood and NTFPs. Diversification of resource use. + Technology of to low-impact forest products exploitation from natural forests; application of advanced technologies in forest exploitation. + Forest product processing technology of small and medium scale. + Developing standard systems for wood and wood products. 5.2. Strengthening research capacity - Institutional arrangement for research: + FSIV is the leading research institute of the forest sector, should be reorganized to Vietnamese Academy of Forest Sciences (VAFS). + Collaboration among research institutes + Encourage the development of NGOs - Human resources development. - Promotion of the infrastructure and facilities for research: modern facilities/equipment for central research institutes; appropriate facilities for ordinary research and local level; information system and databases for research. Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  13 - Improve research efficiency: application of advanced technologies into research; access to research information; strengthen international cooperation; promote technology transference; monitoring and evaluation. 6. FUTURE OPPORTUNITIES Draft Results of Forestry Priority Setting Workshop. Table 1: Priority Programs within Priority ARDOs (First Draft) Priority ARDOs (In Order of Ranking on Return on Investment) Priority Programs (Ranking within ARDOs) ARDO Number 2 Pulp & Small Log Products High priority: • Acacia • Eucalyptus • Pinus caribaeae Medium priority: • Endospermum chiense • Ormosia pinnata • Melaleuca sp • Casuariana equisetifolia Low priority: • Melia azedarach Linn. • Cunminghamia lanceolata • Manglieta glauca 1 Large Timber High priority: • Imported Trees: Acacia sp; Eucalyptus sp, Khaya senegalensis, Cedrela odorata • Native Trees: Liquidambar formosana, : Trema orientalis, Melia azedarach Linn, Duabanga grandiflora, Ailanthus triphysa, Endospermum chiense… Medium priority: • Other commercial value trees Moraceae sp; Hopea recopei; Michelia mediocris Dandy;Tarietia javanica; Parashorea chinensis Low priority: • Groups of precious and native trees. Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  14 3 Bamboo & Rattan Select and develop high value Bamboo and Rattan . Market research 4 Non-Timber Forest Products Select and develop high commercial value species for ecological areas. • Foodstuffs • Spices • Medicinal Plants • Essential Oils Post-Harvest technology. Market Research 7 Forest Policy Policy analysis & advice for revising the law of forestry investment and protection Impact analysis of benefits of incentives in natural and protected forests (Decree 178) Forest and forest land allocation policy Impact of use of natural forests as production forestry The environmental service using policy (such as hydroelectric power plant) 6 Environment & Services Environment • Interaction between forest and environment. • Technical and economic criteria for protection forests (riverhead, coastal and environment) • Cropping pattern and practices of forestation for protective forest/restore biological health • Solutions for protecting forest, prevent natural calamity Environmental services: • Quantify the price of products and forest environmental services. • Manage and use environmental services: - Protect riverhead forest - Preserve bio-diversification - Ecological tourism 5 Biodiversity & Conservation High priority: • Basic survey on species. Medium priority: • Classify forests based on preservation function. • Survey on specific ecosystems. • GIS in preservation. • Research the effect/usefulness of species. • Educate on preservation environment. Low priority: • Methods of inter-country preservation • Mechanism of sharing preservation information Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  15 High Priority Return on Investment Return on investment for Pulp and Small Log Products (Areas of Research and Development Opportunity - ARDO 2) was assessed as highest by a large margin. This assessment no doubt reflects the size and financial contribution from the ARDO and the relatively short time from establishment to income generation. It also reflects the large infrastructure development in process. However although it is considered that there remains potential for research to contribute to higher returns on investment, it is also considered that there is more than adequate research capacity in this ARDO and perhaps some improvement in research capacity in other ARDOs (e.g. Environment and Conservation) may result in higher returns on investment in this ARDO in the longer term. Return on Investment for Large Timber was next highest, but assessed as much less than Pulp and Small Log Products. Overcoming the difficulties of lack of income between establishment and harvesting, through technologies such as intercropping or integrating pulp and large timber production systems could increase the Likelihood of Uptake and therefore return on investment. Medium Return on Investment ARDO 3 (Bamboo & Rattan) and ARDO 4 (Non-Timber Forest Products) were considered to have medium term on investment with Bamboo & Rattan being higher than Non-Timber Forest Products. Potential Benefits for both these ARDOs were considered low, but the likelihood of uptake high as both have the potential for rapid income generation through adoption of new technologies and practices. Low Return on Investment ARDOs 5, 6 and 7 were considered to have low return on investment. This analysis reflects the ability of these ARDOs to generate benefits in the short term. This perception is strong amongst researchers with a focus on production research and the workshop result is not surprising. However a broader cross-section of stakeholders including those with a focus on longer term benefits from research in Environment and Services, Bio-Diversity and Conservation and in Forest Policy may result in a greater emphasis for these ARDOs. There appears to be a relatively low level of research capacity in these 3 ARDOs (particularly Environment and Services) and some emphasis on improving capacities in these ARDOs appears warranted. 7. RESEARCH CAPACITY Capacity in forest science and technology Year Total Prof. PhD Msc. Graduate 2005 301 5 25 76 195 2006 293 4 26 59 204 2007 643 13 54 193 383 2008 662 13 60 246 343 2009 527 4 29 152 342 Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  16 The statistics counts only those getting salary from the state budget and working in the governmental research institutions and entities such as Forest Science Institute of Vietnam (FSIV), the Vietnam Forestry University (VFU) and Forest Inventory and Planning Institute (FIPI). In fact, the number of persons engaged in forestry science and technology would be more who may work for the other governmental and non-governmental organizations (like national parks, Seed Company, the Center for Forest Protection, VINAFOR,). Generally speaking, the number of highly qualified scientific staffs has tended to decrease, due to many retirees, while sources added slowly. For the forestry research system – while it is considered that there are more-or-less enough researchers in the system, there are still many gaps in quality (researcher capacities) and comprehensiveness of the research system. For example, there are gaps in basic research on forest flora and fauna, forest hydrology, and forest ecology etc. Even for aspects which are considered quite effective such as silviculture technologies, the lack still appears in terms of the number of researchers, especially leading researchers for deep and specific research areas. The gap between different researcher generations and inconsistent quality are big challenges. The content and approach to research is often not sufficiently systematic to scale-up previous research results, or sufficiently cross-sectoral to solve comprehensively thorny problems in actual forest management and production systems. With the change to the market mechanism, and changes in forestry practice nationally and internationally, research staff have also not been trained in relevant knowledge and research skills which has resulted in some ineffective research results. Another critical issue is how to keep competent researchers working in the system, and how to attract competent young researchers to start work in forestry The main constraints appear to lie in: (a) the way in which research topics are identified and prioritized, and the extent to which they are accurately based on the demand from end-users; and (b) constraints in the way in which research results are disseminated and made available to practitioners. Medium- and long-term forecast practice in sector development has not been given enough attention, in order to facilitate the orientation of research for each period of time • The research planning and investment cycle (of 2-3 years at sector level and 5 years at national level respectively) is inappropriate to forestry research which requires a long time horizon and business production cycle; • Essential follow-up activities to research are often neglected and not included in research plans and budgets (e.g. for publications and information dissemination, incorporation of research results into training courses etc.); • Information dissemination practices are generally weak, a lot of research results and documents are considered the property of a single institute so access to these is limited – it would be good if this information could be systematically stored and publicly accessed; • Funding for science and technology is limited (with only around 10% of the requirement covered by the budget from MARD) which means that research centers focus on fulfilling the core aspects, with limited attention to dissemination and application of results. Discussion Paper for Agriculture Sector Priorities settings Workshop – Section Forestry  17 • There is a lack of motivation for researchers, and of motivation to apply new technologies in production due to a lack of healthy competition, and attractive incentive policies for research, especially policies to encourage good researchers to be committed and engaged in their work. 8. CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION In the coming period, research on forest seeds tree improvement continues to be a top priority. For the last year this has contributed greatly to the development of the forestry sector, particularly in establishing new forest plantations. However, due to long-time investment, large financial investment etc., it is very difficult to assess and indicate effectiveness of the research for the public. Researches on forest exploitation and forest product processing are also essential for forestry sector development, but again, because of high and long term investment nature of those researches, it is difficult to attract society to pay attention to that. Also need to pay attention to the researches on Silviculture and inventory of the forest resources.

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