Reliable information and careful planning are important for sustainable forest management. FAO's work in the field of forestry planning and statistics aims to provide member countries with information and tools necessary to improve their forest management and forestry policies.

What types of information are currently produced? FAO produces a wide range of information and tools to help forest managers and policymakers. Information about forest resources is collected and disseminated through the Global Forest Resources Assessment , while information about the production, trade and consumption of wood and wood products is collected by means of questionnaires sent to countries each year. This information is reproduced in the FAO statistical database (FAOSTAT). In addition to these two main subject areas, other important information about non-wood forest products , forestry policies, institutions and legislation are also collected and disseminated on the FAO website.

How is this information used? This information is used in a number of different ways. Information is used to analyse developments in the forestry and forest industry sectors for the purposes of planning, policy development and investment appraisal. It is also used to analyse the impacts of other policies, plans and trends on the supply and demand for forestry goods and services. The results of such analyses can then be used to examine the sustainability of developments in the forestry sector and the role of forests in sustainable development at all levels.

What is available on these webpages? These webpages contain a selection of recent studies on data collection, outlook studies and financing sustainable forest management, including the following:

  • Data collection and analysis: the results of recent work with countries to revise and improve the information that they have about the forestry sector;


  • Outlook studies: studies examining future trends and developments in the forestry sector at the regional level; and


  • Forest finance: studies examining some of the economic and financial aspects of sustainable forest management.

In addition to the production of information and analyses, FAO also provides technical advice and support to countries to help them implement their national forest programmes. This includes training and the production of methodologies, tools, guidelines and reference materials in the areas of forestry statistics, sectoral analysis, planning and forestry economics. A number of models, tools and other resources can be found here to assist countries in some of these areas

last updated:  Wednesday, September 4, 2002