India's National Bamboo Mission leads multi-partner initiative to develop industrial-scale bamboo production in Arunachal Pradesh, seeks to promote use of resource as timber alternative, authorizes production of bamboo plywood, veneers

YOKOHAMA, Japan , February 15, 2014 () – India has rich bamboo resources and more than sixty percent is concentrated in North East India. Arunachal Pradesh is known to harbour very diverse bamboo species. However, this resource rich state has a long way to go to adopt the latest bamboo processing technologies to maximise economic benefits.

India has a strong bamboo and cane craft tradition but does not take full advantage of the resources available. With technical, financial and policy support from the government through the National Bamboo Mission (NBM) and the National Mission on Bamboo Applications (NMBA) as well as the Arunachal Pradesh state government, efforts are underway to industrialise the bamboo sector.

The development of industries based on non-timber forest products including bamboo is one focus of the industrial policy of Arunachal Pradesh.

Bamboo development including plantation establishment, management, harvesting and value added processing has the potential to generate employment especially for rural unemployed youths.

Moreover, advancing the industrial bamboo sector in the State would produce an alternative for timber and would expand local skills and generate income for rural communities and the state.

The production of plywood and veneers using bamboo as the raw material by mills within approved industrial estates has been authorised. Further, under section 4.1 of the Arunachal Pradesh (Control of felling and removal of trees from non forest land) Rules, 2001; authorisation from the Forest Department to harvest bamboo is not required for bamboo in non reserve forest areas or plantations.

Source: Tropical Timber Market Report, International Tropical Timber Organization, Yokohama, Japan.

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