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Anti-Corruption Issue: Efforts To Fight Against Corruption In Forestry Sector

13 August 2018

An anti-corruption workshop on the sector of forestry was held on Monday at Forest Department of Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation in Nay Pyi Taw.

Union Minister for Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation U Ohn Win assured that the Forest Department is cooperating with the Tatmadaw, Myanmar police force and the public to deter the illegal logging and production of forest goods as the illegal acts lead to environmental damage and state budget losses.

Director, Forest Department (Administrative Section), Khin Maung Win said “Corruption is the main challenge of developing the country. That’s why the government is emphasizing fighting against corruption and the forest department is together with the government. Even licensed timber producers approach forestry staffs when they want to go beyond rules and regulations. That leads to corruption, and we’re trying to reduce that situation. But, there are obstacles like the ratio of forest land and staff. Data shows only one staff has to control over 8,000 acres of forest land.”

The workshop aims to reduce illegal logging, to find out basis causes of corruption and solutions on how to fight against corruption among illegal timber producers and forestry staffs. Myanmar Anti-corruption Commission and Union Supreme Court officials joined the workshop to explain the laws and regulations on eradicating corruption and judiciary mattes. According to the Forest Resource Assessment by FAO, the forest coverage in Myanmar is 42.92% of the country’s area in 2015. Over 47 million acres of land is managed by over 5,000 forestry staffs.