Annual Report 2015: Policy engagement

Policy Makers and Experts Meet on Transforming Mountain Forestry

Forests cover around a quarter of the Hindu Kush Himalayas – holding fragile slopes in place, contributing to watershed health, and providing crucial ecosystem services in the mountains and areas downstream. Mountain forestry involves specialized concerns that separate it to some extent from  general forestry.

As India is now in the process of reviewing its forest policy and other countries will also be updating their forest policies, ICIMOD brought together global and regional experts and government representatives to highlight issues specific to mountain forestry in ways that can inform policy discussions and ultimately improve forest management practices.

More than 300 delegates from 16 countries, international organizations, and regional governments delved into key issues during the five-day Transforming Mountain Forestry Symposium in Dehradun, India, from topics such as forest fires, invasive species, human-wildlife interaction, payment for ecosystem services, forest classification, and management and policy options.

The symposium included a lawmakers’ session that brought together ministers and Members of Parliament from India’s mountain states and Bangladesh to discuss transboundary cooperation. Representatives from European and Southeast Asian countries also shared their experiences in the symposium, which produced detailed documents with recommendations.

Sharing of knowledge, data, and  human resources is critical to the success  of transboundary cooperation.
Dasho Namgay Wangchuk
Director General
Council for RnR Research of Bhutan