Medium-term outlook for the subsector

The Melanesian SIDS (Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Fiji and Vanuatu) all enjoy fairly significant land area, fertile soils and natural resources. Their export bases are, however, narrow. The medium- to long-term forestry prospects will rely on the adoption of sustainable forest management practices in the natural forests, the establishment of plantations and the further development of appropriate wood processing industries.

The SIDS of Polynesia and Micronesia are generally less equipped with resources. Those that are of volcanic origin (e.g. Samoa and Tonga) have rich soils, and agriculture or forestry provide development options. Samoa is presently the only Polynesian country with a timber export industry. However, most of the smaller islands are coral based and have very poor soils, small land areas and few land-based natural resources. Tourism, fisheries, foreign aid and expatriate remittances are likely to be the main income earning possibilities in these islands. Agroforestry systems with coconut as the main wood resource seems to hold the most promising prospect as a sustainable land-use system for atoll states and territories.

In the Caribbean SIDS, the main focus is expected to continue to be tourism. Forests are mainly needed to safeguard freshwater supply and conserve biological diversity. Nevertheless, the production of wood and non-wood forest products could play an increasingly important role in import substitution (e.g. lumber for artisanal furniture production or wood energy).

The lowland forests of Belize, Guyana and Suriname have great economic potential, but timber and other forest resources are heavily underpriced.

Outlook studies

Regional study: the South Pacific(English) Brown, C. In: Asia-Pacific Forestry Sector Outlook Study Working Paper Series (FAO), no. 1 / FAO, Rome (Italy). Forestry Policy and Planning Div.; FAO, Bangkok (Thailand). Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, February 1997, p. 51

Pacific Rim demand and supply situation, trends and prospects: implications for forest products trade in the Asia Pacific region;Draft. v. 1: Main report (English) Waggener, T.R. & Lane, C. In: Asia-Pacific Forestry Sector Outlook Study Working Paper Series (FAO), no. 2 / FAO, Rome (Italy). Forestry Policy and Planning Div.; FAO, Bangkok (Thailand). Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, February 1997, vp.

Status, trends and future scenarios for forest conservation including protected areas in the Asia-Pacific region(English) Paine, J.R., Byron, N. & Poffenberger, M. In: Asia-Pacific Forestry Sector Outlook Study Working Paper Series (FAO), no. 4 / FAO, Rome (Italy). Forestry Policy and Planning Div.; FAO, Bangkok (Thailand). Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, May 1997, p.74

The implications of the GATT Uruguay Round and other trade arrangements for the Asia-Pacific forest products trade(English) Brown, C. In: Asia-Pacific Forestry Sector Outlook Study Working Paper Series (FAO), no. 3 / FAO, Rome (Italy). Forestry Policy and Planning Div.; FAO, Bangkok (Thailand). Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, April 1997, p. 28

Outlook studies in general
FAO's Web site on outlook studies, providing a detailed and comprehensive description of outlook studies undertaken within FAO, organized by geographical area.

SIDS country-specific outlook studies

Guinea-Bissau (in French)

Mauritius

Maldives

Seychelles

Papua New Guinea

last updated:  Saturday, October 29, 2005