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This chapter identifies and discusses the factors that may bring about changes in the forestry sector during the next two decades (until 2020).


The population density in Sudan is 12 persons /km². This figure gives a false indicator of population distribution when cultivable/ arable land is considered. The population density is as high as 370 persons/km² in land presently cultivated along the Nile. Approximately half population is estimated living on just 15% of the land.

Main feature of population is rapid growth rate 2.05% due to high fertility rate that shows declining trends estimated in 1980 by 6.4, reduced to 4.6 in 2000. However, a declining trend of mortality rate influences the population growth rate. The annual rate of growth of the population in urban areas is 5.6–6% versus 2% in rural areas. An important demographic dimension is the impact on the age structure of the population; about 38.9% of the total population is under 15 years of age. This young population structure implies heavy burden on social services, especially on education and health. During the next 20 years these people will likely form an increasingly heavy consumption base for forests products and services. However, at the same time young population structure will promise a big development potential in terms of labour market during the next two decades. The projection of UN reflects that urbanisation will increase by 110%, so expansion of human settlements will be at the expense of tree cover.

Epidemic diseases have serious impact on population increase, mortality and socio-economic features. Most dominant epidemic diseases were malaria, diarrhoea, and dysentery. In recent years malaria has become one of the major causes of death in Sudan. Due to this fact we expect shortage for household and communities with potentially serious implications for production hence it has considerable long-term socio-economic consequences.

Rural-urban migration due to different factors affects demand for natural resources and plays an important role in urban growth. In spite of large flows of rural to urban areas, high fertility rate in rural areas resulted in substantial growth, exerting pressure on forest resources.

Civil war in southern Sudan and natural hazards in western Sudan entail displacement of sizeable population in urban or secured areas; total migrants or displaced persons in Northern secured States constitute about 16% of the total population. Concentration of displaced persons and livestock on surroundings resulted in land degradation, influenced population, distribution, and changed socio-economic features that entails food security problems and exerts pressure on limited social services. Although there is no reliable quantitative information on living conditions in the South, poverty is reported to encompass the entire population in the South, and consequently access to social services is minimal. The bulk of population is dependent on food aid from NGOs, UN agencies and bilateral donors.

On the other hand civil war, and political conflicts in neighbouring countries have created large flows of refugees estimated about one million, residing in Western, Central, Eastern and Southern Sudan. Although their movements have been too small to significantly influence national population growth, but have significant role in environmental degradation.

Estimated per capita income is 269.8 US$ in 1997 (Central Bureau of Statistics, 1999). Income was unevenly distributed so it is difficult to be used as development indicator, however, it may influence demand for forest products, as income growth change, demand for forest products changed. In urban areas where the per capita income is relatively high, demand for forest products as source of energy decreased due to shift to other sources of energy (butane gas & electricity). On the other hand, due to urbanisation, demand for timber products will increase as standard of living improves. Accordingly in early 1990’s about 93% of the rural population and 84% of urban population are poor.


There are broad indications that the Sudan economy improved in the 1990s after years of decline. This is manifested in the following:

GDP growth rate averaged 5% during 1992-93 to 1998. This was led mainly by agriculture. Construction activities linked to investment in oil in the last three years contributed to the growth process. The general economic improvement has been helped by the government’s containment of fiscal deficits, limits on monetary growth and a reduced rate of inflation.

A notable development in agricultural production in the 1990s is the emergence of livestock exports which rose from US$ 57 million in 1994/ 95 to around US$ 100 million in 1998. While earnings from cotton fell from US$ 162.8 million to US$ 95.6 million during the same period. Export volume grew at around 140% during 1995-98. The recent discovery of petroleum stands to diversify exports further.

Inflation was high in the earlier parts of the 1990s, reflecting widened fiscal deficits and domestic credit expansion. Recently, inflation declined from a more than 100% in 1991 to 17% in 1998 as Government adopted tighter policies, especially tight monetary measures.

Starting in 1997, a phased introduction of a wide range of trade and other reforms moved the exchange regime towards a unified system. The spreads between official and unofficial exchange rates were gradually reduced. Import and export restrictions, were relaxed except for a few items kept for reasons of religion, national security, public health and domestic food sufficiency. The exchange rate was effectively unified by the end of October 1998.

Investment: the Investment promotion Act intends to rationalise the investment sanctioning procedures and stimulate greater private investments and growth. The Act provides guarantees against nationalisation and for transfer of profits. The Act also provided fiscal exemptions for investors, including tax holidays and exemptions on import duties, fees and consumption and production taxes.

External Debt: The main challenge to external financial management is a heavy external debt burden, which amounted to some US$ 22 billion at the end of 1998.



From 1992 Go

vernment of Sudan adopted the Trade Liberalisation policy from the Paraguay Round of the WTO.

Analysis of the wood consumption data under current market prices can be used to estimate the contribution of forestry to the national economic: In 1994 the forestry sector provided 15.77 million m³ of wood predicts to the economy. In addition is provided appreciable of non-wood products for local consumption and export. At current market prices (1994) these products are valued at Ls. 219,425 million. This estimate amounts to 12.4% of the GDP at current prices for 1994/95.



Sudan’s development plans and programs have stressed the importance of increased agricultural production, but only some of them tackled adequately the balance between agricultural development & natural resource management. As a result Sudan’s natural resources have been neglected & seriously degraded by destructive agricultural activities and tree cutting for charcoal & firewood consumption.

Periodic drought intensified the environmental impact of these land management practices and large areas of Sudan were left useless for agricultural and pastoral production. As a result from this, land degradation became a major concern for the government. However, major problem facing these efforts is the lack of an integrated land use policy.

Recent development policies are calling for rational use of natural resources and environmental protection through range rehabilitation and forestry development. In the 1990’s Sudan has undertaken strategies and policies aiming at sustainable development, as it ratified and signed the UN conventions on environment.

A Higher Council for Environment and Natural Resources (HCENR) was established in 1992 with the mandate of co-ordinating activities pertaining to the environment and developing policies and strategies in this regard. The HCENR is implementing three strategic projects: Support for Strategic Planning for Sustainable Environment Development; National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan and Climate Change. These strategies together with the National Action Plan for combating desertification and mitigating the effects of drought -under preparation- will be harmonised through a newly Formulated project: Strengthening the Government of Sudan for the Formulation of a National Strategy for Sustainable Development. This action is supported by the promulgation of the Environment Conservation Act 2000, which provides a policy and institutional framework for the conservation of the environment and natural resources.

Preparations are now under way to formulate a 25-years National Strategy (2002 –2027). However, the implementation of the CNS (1992-2002) was far below the expectations and there were inherent contradictions in the components of the strategy.

One of the determining factors in natural resource management in the Sudan is the federal system (26 States) and the decentralisation process, which was started in 1993. This resulted in imbalances in the distribution of natural resources, where some states have abundant resources, others lack them. The States considered forests as a revenue-generating sector. This led to conflict between the FNC as the institution responsible about federal forests and the States. It is expected that more powers will be divulged to the States as regards natural resource management. Most probably the responsibility of managing these resources will be amalgamated under the State and local governments.

Land tenure system greatly influences the exploitation of natural resources, the 1970 unregistered Land Act of Sudan stated that all unregistered land is state owned, but local people have usufruct rights. Although the customary systems of land tenure define the use of communal lands to some extent, the scarcity of land-based resources and due to some development policies conflicts on land use have occurred. Being the freehand hold owner of land, the Government enjoys Locus Standi (right of action) in relation to any dispute over benefits arising out of the same.

Both the Forest Policy 1986 and the Forest National Corporation Act 1989 recognised for the first time the right of private ownership of forests (community, institutions and individuals).

It is expected that future policies will endorse the present trends in the forestry sector of more involvement of local communities in management and benefit sharing in all forests, especially the reserved forests.



Irrigated agriculture covers some 2 million ha, with irrigation water coming mainly from the Nile and its tributaries by way of gravity flow from the dams, pump uplifting from the river or flood irrigation in Gash and Tokar plains (deltas). Small areas are irrigated from under ground water.

Mechanisation is most suitable in the central clay plains due to the heaviness of the clay soil, the extensiveness of the area the scarcity of population and shortage of drinking water, especially during the harvest season. All land in the central clay plains is government owned and is being granted to interested investors on 25-year lease.

The Traditional Rain-fed Agriculture area is estimated at 9 million ha mostly in western and southern Sudan and in certain areas of central Sudan. All the land in the traditional sector is virtually communally owned and is distributed by the local leaders to members of clans and tribes in small plots where hand implements are used.

Agricultural development and investment in Sudan had in the past been sharply skewed towards modern irrigated and rain-fed mechanised sub-sectors. The dominant traditional rain-fed sub-sector has been marginalized. This led to lower growth rates in the economy, magnified regional disparities and created social tensions and civil strives which further drained the country’s scare, human and material resources needed for development. In addition to political instability, agricultural development and food security in Sudan are impeded by various other challenges and constraints.

The pressures on the forest resources are attributed to three causes:

The concentration of the human and livestock populations in the most productive and well-developed central parts of the Sudan

The uneven distribution of the forestry resources and population between the North and the South

Arboreal biomass constitutes over 75% of the country’s energy requirements

Agricultural crop production is practised mainly in the central clay plains where the annual rainfall is about 450 mm, the optimum for grain production. The area was originally forest where the trees were cleared. An area is cultivable for about four to five years after which it is abandoned due to soil depletion and lands exhaustion. Crop production advances opening new of virgin forest area at a rate of about 300,000 ha per year. The needs of the population for food must be satisfied while agriculture is the main producer of export commodities and foreign currency earnings.

Agriculture expansion in the absence of proper land-use and forest management plans will affect negatively forestry development. This calls for an urgent need to plan and rationalise land use in such a way as to fulfil that need of contemporary and future generations in sustainable manners.



Sudan is characterised by low level of industrialisation therefore most of wood-based products consumed by industrial sector utilised by traditional industry as wood fuel.

The Forest Products Consumption Survey in the Sudan (FNC, 1995) reflects that the industrial sector in 1994 used only 6.8% of the total wood consumption. Its consumption was 1.07 million m3 round wood. Almost all the quantity (98.5%) was consumed in the form of firewood and the remaining 1.5-% are distributed among all the other uses. Brick kilns were the highest consumers, consuming about 51.5% of the total wood. The furniture industry consumes a small proportion (1.5-%) of the total wood supply equivalent to Household per capita of 0.009m3. Saw milling industry consumes not more than 1% of the total wood produced in the country.

There are no other industrial uses of wood not even the simple ones like; the manufacturing of matchsticks, pencils or wood-based boards. There are no chemical industries depending on wood or NWFPs. Most of the sawn softwood and all wood-based panels currently consumed in the Sudan are being imported. Local and global changes are expected during the next two decades to influence the future of forestry development, forest utilisation and the type of forest products. This will be generating the establishment of forest-based industry and will give an opportunity to engage local labour in the growing and delivering of raw material. Hence development of sound forest industries in response to the expected increasing demand can be an engine for further economic growth in the country.



For centuries forests have supplied a multitude of food, fibre, medicines, fodder, fuel, construction materials and environmental services all over the Sudan, to the indigenous people and more recently to migrants from other African countries.

The broadened perspectives on forest roles are reflected in the international initiatives designed to enhance both the management of forest and the benefits derived from them. The development in forest services is greatly linked with affects and has effects on other sectors. The pressure on forest can be considered much higher than their natural regeneration capacity.

The Sudan government gives high priority to land protection by trees and forests. Some of the developmental projects aim to stabilise sand dunes and product seedlings for shelterbelts and soil stabilisation around wells. Most of these projects include training of local communities to achieve sustained, environmentally sound rural community developments.

2.7.1 Socio–cultural roles and nature-based Eco-tourism

The Socio-cultural functions of forests are a major factor favouring conservation of certain trees in some regions of the Sudan. Sheikhs in rural areas as part of the community legislation prevent people from cutting trees and punish th ose who commit such illegal tree felling. There are certain cultural and religious beliefs and myths attached to trees, strengthening the importance of the forest for the local people. Non-timber forest products are very important for traditional medicine in most parts of the Sudan. An array of mammals, birds and reptiles are used for healing and prevention.

Eco-tourism provides an economic incentive to protect natural resources. It also offers jobs and the potential for economic advancement to residents of rural communities. Eco-tourism in forest is still a relatively small component of the world’s huge travel and tourism industry, but locally Eco-tourism in forest and parks is generating significant interest recently. All protected game and forested areas have high potential to serve in ecotourism. But there is a lack of necessary infrastructure for development of wildlife and forestry related tourism. The large tourist companies in Sudan are concerned only with the wealthy first class tourists who mostly come from Arab Countries to practice sport hunting Eco-tourism (not all of which is forest–based) had a turn over of about 22.3 millions US$ in 1999.

2.7.2 Agricultural Services of Forest and Trees

Forests provide a restorative service to agriculture most clearly evident in shifting cultivation in replenishing degraded land, recycling nutrients, maintaining and rehabilitating soil structure contributing to the water cycle and regulation of water protecting watershed, providing shade and shelter. Windbreaks are another important service in specific situation (DANIDA 1989).

One of the most prominent agriculture related forest service is grazing and browsing. UNSO (1991) stated that in many developing Sudano-Sahelian countries 30 to 40% of domestic animals rely on forest for some or all of their grazing and fodder. Forest grazing is generally carried out under traditional accesses; right and fees are rarely levied. Consequently over-grazing is common, particularly around water sources and wet season grazing areas. The extension of farmland mostly in traditional rain-fed sector is execrably reduces the space available for traditional pastoral farming.

2.7.3 Conservation of Wildlife and Biological Diversity value

Wild animals exert significant influence on food production systems and ecological systems. They also provide other services such as pollination. The loss of biological diversity is being experienced at an alarming rate. The main cause is being human intervention, especially deforestation, overgrazing and overall ecosystem fragmentation.

The conservation strategy adopted in all Africa is the system of establishing national parks and game reserves. This is due to ever increasing conflicts, between human interest and those of wildlife resources. Now, 8 national parks exist with a total of 8,499,790 ha representing 3.2% of the area of the country. Two national parks are declared as " biosphere reserves " and the national parks also include a marine park in the Red Sea Coast. There are also 14 game reserves with a total of 318,000 ha constituting 1.3% of the area of Sudan and 3 game sanctuaries with a total area of 95,500 ha. The total area of protected areas is 11,775,240 ha or 5.04% of the total area of the country.

2.7.4 Service of Mangrove ecosystems

Mangrove forests extend over about 42 km2 in the Sudanese Red Sea coast. Mangrove forests are located along the Red Sea coast from Ageig up to Halaeb. There are about 19 forests. Extensive stands of mangrove-tree species are the most common halophytic fodder species in the Red Sea region of Sudan.

Mangroves provide a wide range of services and functions:

Production functions ranging from fuel wood and charcoal, medicinal and chemical products, wildlife and fishery products to the local communities near by

Habituated Functions: mangroves are important for many resident & migratory bird populations

Important sink functions holding excess nutrients and pollutants that could otherwise be discharged directly into coastal lagoons, coral reefs and other near-shore areas

Physical coastal protection or storm protection functions for shorelines

The subsequent sharp rise in human population and their activities in the Red Sea Coastal regions posed considerable damage on such ecosystems. Mohamed (1999) mentioned that salt marsh vegetation at marsa Atta, being described by Kassas (1957), which comprised six recognisable zones, presently is reduced to a poor diffuse trizonal assemblage of halophytes.

2.7.5 Carbon sequestration

Geriegikh community based rangeland rehabilitation project under GEF programme, which is situated in arid zone, it covers an area of 23,477 ha. Total carbon retained by biomass in open and grazing allotments and those quantified of carbon added due to the activities in form of reduced demand displacement and change in house construction were summated a total of 43,311.83 tons equivalent to 2.4T/ha.

2.7.6 Watershed Services of Forests

Forests contribute to watershed quality by stabilising off-site soil, reducing off side sedimentation, reducing flood peaks on streams in small watersheds and replenishing ground water and watercourses. These ecological stabilisation functions of forests also contribute to orderly management of hydro-power and irrigation schemes.

Many important watershed areas at the Eastern mountains, Rashad Area in South Western Sudan, Nuba Mountains, Jebel El Dair, where Bamboo forests contribute to watershed services. Radom National Park supports a high diversity of fauna and floral structure characteristics of the high rainfall woodland Savannah. It is an important watershed area holding the main contributors to the water regime of Bahr el Ghazal, which contribute effectively to the White Nile water regime.



Sudan depends mainly on forestry sector as energy source; it contributes a total of 4.11 million T.O.E representing 70.8% of energy supplies in the country (FNC, 1995).

Demand for wood fuel increased in last years due to rapid population growth, urbanisation and shortage of modern energy, however, wood fuel consumption in Sudan is expected to decrease from current consumption as a result of investments and refining of petroleum by 2001 especially in household and traditional industries sectors. Fire wood consumption decreased by urbanisation, while firewood still dominates in rural areas.

Household per capita commercial energy consumption was very low, due to population growth, urbanisation and limited supply, hence more pressure on forests resource, especially in subsistence sector where pattern of supply took place in form of collection (free as public good), by family members from near by forests. The ratio of purchased versus collected firewood is strongly associated with urbanisation: The percentage of firewood collected is 14.6% for urban households, and 82.2% in rural areas. Collected wood is generally less damaging to natural resources and environment, since the material is confined to collected branches, twigs etc.

Purchased wood represents only about 28% of wood supply pattern (took place in market economy). It was more destructive, because it is harvested from natural forest areas cleared for agricultural production or for purpose of wood fuel production i.e. whole plant. Fire wood purchase and/or collection is associated with income level in both rural and urban areas, collection tends to decrease as income rises. Agricultural residues and biogas for use as fuel were only at its pilot stages; most of production is consumed in small scale.

For traditional industries, including brick making, bakeries, oil mill etc. is found that wood fuel provides about 69.3% of their total consumption. Type of wood consumed is mainly firewood (stem), which had significant impact on forest resources.

In commercial and services sector: include institutions such as schools, hospitals, restaurants, commercial establishments and informal activities (tea, kisra ,etc), wood fuel consumption accounts 67% of the total energy used. It is concentrated in urban areas and their development depends on urbanisation rate. Quranic schools: depend totally on wood fuel especially in lighting.

Investments in petroleum resource have impact in supply and consumption of biomass energy especially on household and industrial sectors. Total LPG supply was 200 ton/day while actual consumption about 100 ton/day in all sectors equivalent to 15 % of total country consumption (Ministry of Energy and Mining 2000). This investment resulted in reduction and drop of petroleum product prices e.g. kilo of butane gas dropped by 50%, this will provide opportunities for substitution of biomass energy in household and traditional industrial sectors in urban and rural centres, however, rural energy demand is expected to continue its dependence on wood fuel unless supported by a strategic plan for energy change, this includes:

Encouraging gas cylinder and butane gas cookers industry

Providing loans and credits for gas equipment purchase for low-income groups.

Taking out taxes and other expenditures put on the imported butane gas equipment.

Establishing new butane gas service centres in rural areas. All these will change degree of dependence on biomass energy especially in semi arid zones where firewood-collecting areas are becoming very remote

Charcoal high price compared to butane gas price will make its marketing no longer continue due to shifting to butane gas consumption in household sector. With respect to traditional industries fuel wood will be substituted by furnace.



The development of the infrastructure is highly important for the Sudan with its extensive area, diverse environment and agricultural systems. The railway lines draw their importance as lifelines connecting south, west and north Sudan to the main port on the Red Sea Coast. The railway in Sudan is the oldest on the continent and the longest, extending for 4570 km and together with the branch lines constitute some 5500 km.

Sudan’s road infrastructure is inadequate. In 1999 there were an estimated 3160 km of main roads and 739 km of secondary roads. Most roads are unpaved. The road carries 40% of the country’s petroleum products. New roads are under way in a number of infra–state highways.

River navigation is an important mean of transport to link North and south. After the peaceful settlement of conflicts, this means of transport is important for forest Development in the south.

Port Sudan is the country’s major commercial Port, other ports, are being rehabilitated and developed such as Suakin, Ausif and Bashair from which petroleum products are exported. Sudan Sea Line, which is government owned, has a number of vessels for the transport of commodities and passengers around the world.

Air services in Sudan are limited. The country has 19 airfields, of which Khartoum, Port Sudan, El Obeid, El Fasher and Nyala have right facilities. The sector has developed significantly.

Sudan has only 411,000 terrestrial telephone lines in 1999, of which 70% are in the Khartoum area. Daewoo of South Korea is carrying out the development of the mobile telephone network in the central region of the country in a joint venture with Sudatel, the national Telecom Company. The project began in early 1996 and covers Khartoum, Omdurman and wad Medani. There is an Internet service company.



In 1986, the 1932 Forest policy was amended in response to the socio-economic and political developments in the country. The Forest Policy 1986, is characterised by the following:

Maintenance of the major objective of the Forest Department

Stressing the role of forests in environmental protection.

Recognising and encouraging the establishment of community, private and institutional forests within the agricultural sugar schemes.

Subjecting tree cutting outside forest reserves to the discretion of the General Manager, of the FNC, provided that these areas are reserved immediately following their utilisation for the purpose of their protection and regeneration.

Making obligatory the utilisation of tree stocks on lands allocated for agricultural investment (not to be burnt into ashes) and to leave specific percentage of tree cover inside and around agricultural schemes in the form of shelterbelts and windbreaks).

Stressing the polarisation of popular and international efforts for participation in afforestation, tree planting and forest protection.

Raising the national goal of reserves from 15 to 20% of the total area of the country for environmental protection and meeting the population’s needs for forest products.

Emphasis on forest extension and awareness

Conceptualising the multiple use of forests.

Division of authority between the centre and the regions as regards forest management.

The FNC General Manager is appointed ex officio advisor for the regional authorities and the institutions in all matters pertaining to the forests.

Among the major provisions of the Forest Act 1989 is the requirement for farmers obtaining lease from Government or Parastatal schemes to have shelterbelts of forest cover of 10% of rain-fed lands and 5% of irrigated lands. Individuals, communities of institutions planting tree on their own or leased lands will have the freedom to utilise the cut trees, as they deem fit.

Significant changes have taken place in the Sudan and in the world since the present policy was adopted in1986. The 1997 Draft Policy emphasised the privileges and rights of the local people in obtaining their needs from the reserved forests according to agreements between them and the Government The draft policy also encouraged the establishment of private and community forests. Protection of trees outside the reserved forests was emphasised to maintain biodiversity. The role of forests in environmental protection was also elaborated. Also it partially based on the Comprehensive National Strategy (1992 - 2002) which contained a chapter on environment and which allocated 25% of the total area of Sudan for natural resources (forests, range and wildlife), and considering the following:

The general aim of forest policy is to provide guidelines to leaders, administrators and decision makers and to those people whose livelihood depends on the forests as how the forest resources should be managed to give sustained yields.

The threat faced by the natural forests and the need to give them better protection to conserve their biodiversity and make available their sustained indirect benefits.

The concept of multi-purpose management as a general principle especially in indigenous forests, woods lands or bush lands that are not strictly protected as national reserves.

The enhancement of social forestry and farm forestry, including diversification farming systems by various types of tree planting to ensure improved management of water catchment areas, higher land productivity, increased agricultural products, increased rural incomes and alleviation of poverty.

The role of woody vegetation in supporting development in arid and semi-arid lands.

The need for forest protection especially against pests, diseases and fires.

The rationalisation of forest industry to maximise its contribution to the national economy.

Fulfilment of the agreed national obligations under international environmental and other forest-related conventions and principles.



2.11.1 Forestry

Farm machinery has partially replaced simple manual works such as planting, silvicultural operations and harvesting.

In the field of surveying there is a shift to application of Remote Sensing (RS) and Geographical Information system (GIS) techniques especially in large area surveys carried out by some field projects.

There are different varieties of renewable energy technologies that can replace wood fuel especially in H, H and industrial sectors, these includes briquetting, charcoal from crop residues, improved stoves, biogas and solar energy. Wind energy was long used in Sudan. About 250 windmills were imported in 1950 to solve the drinking water problem in Tokar (Eastern Sudan). Because diesel engines are cheaper and can easily be repaired, all those windmills are new out of operation.

To have a successful future for this technology in Sudan, the first step must be the establishment of a model station to encourage the investment in this technology; some means of offering loans and credits must be included in the State policy. Benefit must be made from the experience of other count ries in this field.

2.11.2 Range (Pastoral sector)

Main technological change in the pastoral sector is the shift from traditional livestock production system to other modernised systems that depend mainly or partially on feeds other than natural vegetation that reduces pressure on range. In ranching systems animals depend on range-irrigated fodder and concentrates. In feed lots animals are mainly raised under range, then driven to urban centres for fattening based on concentrates and additives. In dairy farms, animals are raised around urban centres. They depend completely on irrigated fodder crops and concentrates.

Use of mechanisation (tractor+disc harrows) in range rehabilitation operations. A further technology applied in the pastoral sector is the harvesting and bailing of natural forage from water deficiency areas.

2.11.3 Agriculture

The technologies in agriculture include:

Increased use of farm machinery over years especially in irrigated & mechanised rain-fed agricultural system

Water harvesting and use of treated wastewater for efficient water management

Biotechnology: Includes shift from chemical fertilisers to bio-organic farming systems, such as green manuring, use of leguminous species (inter cropping) for Nitrogen fixation and nodulation. To increase crop productivity, stability and sustainability of production there is shift from low genetic characteristics germplasm to others such as high yielding and drought tolerance varieties either by breeding or introduction.

Post-harvest technology: Adoption of post-harvest technology to avoid post harvest losses,

Other utilisation technology is treatment of agricultural residues and agricultural industry by-products as renewable resources to be used as food, feed, fertiliser and fuel.

2.11.4 Wildlife

Traditional inventory assessment, being used in Sudan for long time, is often impractical in vast areas due to manpower and funding limitations. Remote sensing techniques are suitable for habitat inventory monitoring and assessment. These have been used in Sudan for the first time in 1994 for reconnaissance mapping of Dinder National Park and Radom National Park. Also GPS system started to be used since 1997 for monitoring and assessment of wildlife resources in different States.

In Sudan, most of wild animals are captured, to implement various management purposes or for research studies, using traditional methods by chasing and capturing animals by hand using ropes, especially for capturing big game animals. Generally successful capturing programmes result from the efforts of experienced rural people depending upon their indigenous knowledge. Some local fermented drinks (Marisa) are the most attractant bait for capturing Baboon and monkeys. The collection of biological specimens used as techniques for the preservation of biological materials for both animals and plants (herbarium specimens) being practised for long time in Sudan.

The anti poaching units working under the supervision of Wildlife Administration are carrying out their responsibilities of law enforcement under limited conditions of equipment. Vehicles for patrolling purposes in National Parks replaced camels being used previously in the 1970’s and early 1980s. Cars could only cover limited areas in the rainy seasons compared to camels which cruise the inaccessible dense forested areas following poachers, armed with modern automatic weapons (G.M.3, automatic rifles) while game scouts armed with mark 4 rifles.

There are many techniques being used world wide either to maintain the quality of the habitat as it exists in natural ecosystems or to provide quality habitat. It is notable that water pumps were used during harsh dry seasons, to provide water in marches (mayat) in Dinder National Park as a water development method.

New techniques of Ultrasound investigation techniques are being used to study production capabilities for Dorcas gazelles, in captivity, during 1999.



2.12.1 Trends and sources of funding

Annual expenses and investment in the forestry sector:

Accordingly, the FNC retains all the revenue it generates to meet recurring expenses, namely wages and salaries, operation and maintenance. Simultaneously, the FNC annually receives grants in aid from the Federal Government in the form of local counterpart funds for donor-assisted forestry projects and in the form of direct funding for forestry development projects particularly environmental rehabilitation and desertification control activities, which had diminished from 1996.

Experience during the previous ten years since the commencement by FNC of its functions as a corporate body (as of 1 February 1990), indicates that these arrangements are feasible and conducive to growth. During this period the FNC has escalated its forest reservation, tripled its annual afforestation and increased its technical staff list by 25%.

Private Investors:

In tree planting and forest management, the expected return on capital invested is the critical factor. Except for fast-growing plantations, profitability is generally inadequate to mobilise private sector. The traditional involvement of small holders of gum orchards, some large-scale holders, the recent involvement of Gedaref State mechanised scheme owners in the tree belts and the involvement of Gandil private company and small holders of Eucalyptus wood lots around Khartoum.

Forest products: It covers the investment in charcoal making, private sawmills, furniture industry, gum Arabic trade and internal trade of other NWFPs.

The Agricultural Schemes and Sugar Companies:

They have investment in the tree planting and final products, (annex 1.12), but data about the volume of investment is not available.


They work in the area of capacity building, empowerment and awareness raising for environmental conservation and planting trees out side forests. The main areas that have received the major funding are:

Establishment and support to the FNC

Support to forestry education and research

The establishment of forestry extension.

The conduction of socio-economic studies for some natural forests

The conduction of demand survey (1994) and the national forest inventory (1995)

Rehabilitation and desertification control activities

2.12.2 Investment (in wildlife)

CITES enhanced wildlife breeding farms & ranches, as sort of conservation measure, in order to elevate the pressure exerted on the wild resources. The government of Sudan, likewise, encouraged the private sector to invest in the area of wildlife as stated in the National Comprehensive Sudan Strategy (1992-2002). Accordingly, about 40 licenses being issued for the establishment of game farms.

Types of wild animals being reared in such farms are gazelles (Dorcuas gazelles and red-fronted gazelles), Ostrich, Reptiles and Guenia fowl. The intention is to provide optimum condition for the propagation of these species, to protect them from instruction and to fetch a good economic reward to the investors. The current situation showed that most of them are unsuccessful due to lack of scientific supervision and extension support. Mean while an experimental research station is being established to furnish investors with the technical back up and the technological packages needed to help in breeding and rearing

Other field of investment is Eco-tourism. Eco-tourism potentials are great in Sudan, however, it is still very limited due to lack of infrastructure development and the war in the south where most of the rich wildlife areas exist.



2.13.1 Non-Wood Forest Products

A wide range of Non-wood forest products (NWFPs) is provided in Sudan. NWFPs are products of almost 76 indigenous tree species including gums, bamboo, fruits, nuts, fibres, fodder, honey, flowers, medicinal herbs, silk, animal skin, ivory and others ( Ibrahim, 1999) . Despite the great variety in the NWFPs, only a few are considered of commercial value. The most important NWFPs is gum Arabic. Mainly produced from Acacia senegal (hashab) but also from Acacia seyal (talh) trees. At present, almost all non-wood products are used in the raw ( unprocessed) form.

Currently gum Arabic is used in food and pharmaceutical industries. Historically gum was exported in its raw manually cleaned and graded form. Recently, however, Sudan has introduced mechanised cleaning and production of kibbled gum Arabic ( small granules of uniform size) was introduced to gain added value (Coppen 1995 p. 21).

A few other NWFPs are currently subject to varying degrees of processing. For example, gunglaize ( fruit of Adansonia digitata) is sold in the form of powder, doum in the form of cake...etc. New lines of use for NWFPs have recently been invented. One of these is the use of gum Arabic in curing kidney failure. Also the production of oil, cake and molasses from fruits of Banalities egyptiaca is under trial. The products are to be distilled to produce medical alcohol ( Ibrahim 1999).

The most important role of NWFPs is its provision of self-reliance, employment and food security to local economy. Many communities in the Sudan receive income from collection, processing and marketing of these products. Gum Arabic in particular is an important off-farm activity for the inhabitants of the Gum Arabic Belt ( GAB) .

Regarding the other NWFPs they provide the main employment and income sources for the elderly, women and children. As such they play a decisive role in rural areas where resources are meagre and the weaker categories in the community cannot migrate to seek employment elsewhere or cannot engage in the more labour demanding activities.

At the national level, NWFPs contribute to income through export earnings. On average, gum export earnings amount to about 17% of total Sudanese exports thus considered one of top important exports. The rest of the NWFPs contributed to less than 2% of the total export earnings.

2.13.2 Water Resource

The country’s share of Nile water is dictated by the 1959 Nile Water Agreement as 18.5 billion m³. Streams, which are not part of the Nile basin or do not flow to the Nile, mostly flow in the savannah region, flowing for few days or hours during July, August and September.

Ground water is potentially available in about 50% of the surface area of the country. The estimated probable strategic potential of ground water aquifers is amounting to some hundred milliards m3 (Iskander 1998).

The water resources and irrigation strategy is directed towards expansion of irrigated agriculture. Forest belts in irrigated and rain-fed agricultural schemes are part of governmental adopted policies. Limited availability of funds to increase irrigation storage or to develop ground water sources is limiting development of agriculture. Water is realised as the constraint for irrigation development. The strategy in water policy caters for combating desertification and drought and flood mitigation and calls for watershed management and environment analysis and management (Sudan National Water policy, 1999).

The importance of forests for watershed management is recognised. However, decline of areas covered by riverine forests is documented. Loss of tree cover in watershed areas is reflected on increased sedimentation and loss of storage in irrigation dams. The Sudan water policy 1999 addresses care for catchment areas. Introduction of vegetation cover and control of deforestation of catchment areas and overgrazing are included in measures to improve water yield and quality. Watershed management in neighbouring countries is also a prerequisite for efficient water use.

The role of forest in watershed management is recognised in relation to water quality by stabilising on-site soil, reducing off-site sedimentation, reducing flood peaks and replenishing ground water and watercourses. These ecological stabilisation functions of forests also contribute to orderly management of hydropower and irrigation schemes including delaying silting up of dams and loss of storage capacity. Regional co-operation is needed in watershed management.

2.13.3 Impact of petroleum industry on forestry

Large concessions are allocated for petroleum prospecting in different parts of the country. Such areas are subjected to deforestation and soil and air pollution. The problem of disposal of the water produced from oil operation is presented as one of the environmental problems linked to petroleum industry in Sudan. Disposing of large volume of sodic water, contaminated with hydrocarbons and treatment chemicals is being considered now. The level of contamination by oil and grease (hydrocarbons) in the produced water in one of the oil prospecting areas of the Sudan could be reduced from 230 000 mg/l to less than 10 mg/l through use of evaporation ponds. The water after reduction of grease and hydrocarbons through evaporation is considered suitable for irrigation and because of residual hydrocarbons and treatment chemicals the water cannot be used for crops intended for consumption by humans and/or animals. The only suitable crops are forest crops.

The above findings are based on preliminary surveys and are subjected to further studies. Large areas of land could be needed for afforestation activities to dispose of large quantities of water produced in petroleum operations.



Selected major driving forces influencing the future

Population and rural/urban dynamics:

Continued population growth, particularly rural populations which has high dependency on agriculture, is likely to result in continuing conversion of forest land to agricultural and other uses. In turn this will likely lead to a future in which the ability of the forests to produce the products and services expected them to be reduced. However, growing trees outside the forest has permitted continuing availability of wood, mostly for subsistence needs.

Economic growth and forestry consumption:

Without sufficient increases in income, large segments of the population will continue to rely on fuel wood and charcoal for energy. Also it is possible to have a substantial industry relying on forestry products. The key is to plan the use of the resources.

Policy and institutional changes:

The implementation of the federal system of the Government, particularly the devolution of forest management powers to the State governments and the sharing of revenue with them. Past experience reflects that sharing management of the forests between local and the national administrative bodies lead to depletion and mismanagement of the forests and the forest area.



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