At its sixteenth session held in Yangon, Myanmar, in January 1996, the Asia-Pacific Forestry Commission, which has membership open to all governments in the Asia-Pacific region, decided to carry out an outlook study for forestry with horizon year 2010. The study is being coordinated by FAO through its regional office in Bangkok and its Headquarters in Rome, but is being implemented in close partnership with governments, many of which have nominated national focal points.
The scope of the study is to look at the main external and sectoral developments in policies, programmes and institutions that will affect the forestry sector and to assess from this the likely direction of its evolution and to present its likely situation in 2010. The study involves assessment of current status but also of trends from the past and the main forces which are shaping those trends and then builds on this to explore future prospects.
Working papers have been contributed or commissioned on a wide range of topics. They fall under the following categories: country profiles, selected in-depth country or sub-regional studies and thematic studies. Working papers are prepared by individual authors or groups of authors on their own professional responsibility; therefore, the opinions expressed in them do not necessarily reflect the views of their employers, the governments of the Asia-Pacific Forestry Commission or of the Food and Agriculture Organization. In preparing the substantive report to be presented at the next session of the Asia-Pacific Forestry Commission early in 1998, material from these working papers will be an important element but will be blended and interpreted alongside a lot of other material.
Working papers are being produced and issued as they arrive. Some effort at uniformity of presentation is being attempted but the contents are only minimally edited for style or clarity. FAO welcomes from readers any information which they feel would be useful to the study on the subject of any of the working papers or on any other subject that has importance for the Asia-Pacific forestry sector. Such material can be mailed to the contacts given below from whom further copies of these working papers, as well as more information on the Asia-Pacific Forestry Sector Study, can be obtained:
Mr. Mafa Chipeta
Mr. Patrick Durst
"For contrary to what many outsiders believe, forestry is not in its essence, about trees. It is about people. It is only about trees in so far as they can serve the needs of people."
Jack Westoby, 1987
"Forests are, however, about much more than simply trees and people. They are complex, dynamic ecosystems which must endure - not only for the trees and the people, but for the forests themselves, and the planet they inhabit."
Don Hammond, 1997