International partners have pledged some US$200m to help Vietnam’s forestry sector.

The money and technical assistance will help draw up a forestry strategy for 2006-2010, make revisions to the law on forest protection and development, and plant 5 million ha of forest.

It will also help the country establish a nationwide forest sector monitoring and information system, improve ranger offices at all levels, compile a forestry handbook and launch a website.

The Vietnam Forestry Sector Support Programme Partnership Steering Committee reported the total pledges to date at its annual meeting in Hanoi on January 25. The meeting was attended by representatives from the ministry of agriculture and rural development, other relevant ministries and sectors, plus international partners.

This year the forestry sector will concentrate on a number of activities, including sustainable management of forests, preserving biodiversity, providing environmental protection services, processing forestry products and organising courses on forest plantation and protection.