Sarawak Forestry chief sees Kelampayan, other fast-growing plantation species, as key to meeting global wood demand forecast of 6.4 billion m3 in 2020

LOS ANGELES , September 27, 2011 () – The managing director of Sarawak Forestry, Datu Len Talif, says the Malaysian state's forest sector must improve productivity and make major technological changes if it is to meet rising global demand.

Len’s comments were made at a workshop in Kuching last week on the Kelampayan Tree Improvement Program, the Borneo Post reported. Kelampayan is a fast-growing species that can be planted on logged areas and achieve a height of up to 6 meters 14 months after planting.

Len noted a recent FAO World Bank Development report that predicts an increase in worldwide demand for wood products to 6.4 billion m3 in 2020 from 3.5 billion m3 in 1990.

Sarawak is partnering with the private sector to plant one million hectares of plantation forests by 2020, said Len, to reduce dependency on the natural forest and ensure a sustainable supply of raw materials to process into lumber and other wood products.

He highlighted the need for good genetic stock to optimize timber production, including the improved Acacia mangium superbulk, as well as efficient forest management.

The Sarawak Forestry Commission has been researching and developing plantation species since 2003, and is pursuing a tree improvement program that aims to produce Kelampayan that is adaptive and has optimum growth and quality characteristics.

The primary source of this article is the Borneo Post, Borneo, Malaysia, on Sept. 20, 2011.

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