In the Media
Natural teak forests decline, while planted teak forests increase
March 26, 2012
The results of a new FAO global Teak Resources and Market Assessment conducted in 60 tropical countries show that natural teak forests are declining worldwide and that the quality of natural grown teak wood is deteriorating. On the other hand, today’s survey also reveals that planted teak forests are increasing in area and — when good management practices are applied — producing high quality wood.
Natural teak forests grow in only four countries in the world: India, Laos, Myanmar and Thailand. In 2010 their combined area of natural teak forest was estimated at about 29 million hectares (ha), almost half of it growing in Myanmar. Myanmar is the only country that currently produces quality teak from natural forests — India, Lao PDR and Thailand have bans on logging in natural forests or on log exports in place.
According to the survey, natural teak forests declined in area by 385,000 ha globally, or by 1.3 percent, between 1992 and 2010. Substantial declines have been particularly notable in Laos (down by 68,500 ha), India (down 2.1 million ha), and Myanmar (down 1.1 million ha). In Thailand, a complete ban on logging in natural forests introduced in 1989 may have contributed to the recovery of natural teak forests, which are reported to have increased by 2.9 million ha, according to FAO’s report.
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Keywords: Asia, deforestation, India, Lao PDR, Laos, Myanmar, plantation, teak, Thailan