Fourth World Teak Conference calls for superior planting materials
The Fourth World Teak Conference (WTC) has called on countries to facilitate the availability of superior planting materials to private companies and local communities to improve the planted teak forest.
It also asked governments to commit more resources to research and development to advance the sustainable management of the planted teak forest.
The conference, which ended in Accra, said the research should cover an investigation into the quality of teak wood grown in plantations as compared to natural forests.
In a seven-point communique, the conference also noted the need to explore the opportunities of linking teak plantations to carbon credit markets to provide additional incentives and support to the global effort on climate change mitigation.
The conference in Ghana was attended by 273 delegates from 28 countries across five continents and was on the theme: ‘Global teak market: Challenges and opportunities for emerging markets and developing economies.’
The Chairman of the conference, Prof. Victor K. Agyeman, presented the communique to the government through the Deputy Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Benito Owusu-Bio.
The communique was also presented to the other 27 participating countries through their representatives.
Prof. Agyeman emphasized capacity building for stakeholders, especially local communities and field workers, on management techniques, inter-cropping, agro-forestry and other important areas.
Also, the participants resolved to establish confidence in teak investment with smallholders and farmers through the provision of realistic cost-benefit analysis, market price information and enabling government policies and governance frameworks.
“We are urging countries to encourage small-holder growers to better apply silviculture techniques including the use of intercropping systems, to bridge the initial years without earnings from forestry,” he added.
In his closing remarks, Mr Owusu-Bio described the conference as very successful and said the government would adopt the recommendations of the conference to tap the potential of the country’s teak industry.