More than 50 key opinion leaders and forestry experts gathered in Manila for a roundtable discussion on forest development and management. Organized by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and USAID, the event provided an opportunity for members of the forest industry to voice out multi-sectoral and multi-disciplinary perspectives, insights, and recommendations as inputs to the updating of Forestry Master Plan of the Forest Management Bureau.
The 2016-2028 Master Plan has been developed in response to the present forestry landscape in the Philippines, which is shaped by changing climate conditions, expanded role of forests as provider of ecosystem services, and institutional challenges in managing forest resources. Inputs from the participants would help DENR identify and make the first big and bold step in making the Master Plan a real blueprint for nation building and countryside development.
DENR Assistant Secretary for Staff Bureaus Ricardo Calderon said, “This is a gathering of experts who come from different sectors that represent policymakers; academe; private sector, specifically the wood-based and non-wood-based industry; forest planners and managers; advocacy groups and others. I am sure it will eventuate into a more concrete evidence of progress in our shared and common dream of seeing forests of trees in areas we want them seen. Let us ruminate on this dream and be inspired to work harder to let it happen.” (PWP/Meg Yandoc)