VietNamNet Bridge – Responding to the state’s call for afforestation, local
people in Dak Lak province spend their time and money to plant the forests and
protect them over the last 10 years. However, they now have to bargain away the
wood because there is no big timber processing factory in the locality.
Vu Huu Nhan, Deputy Secretary of the M’drak district’s party committee, said
there are some 9,000 hectares of planted forests in the locality. The
afforestation has obviously turned the land areas which were exhausted, fallow
and the bare hills into the verdant land. The forests have helped protect the
water sources and reduce the floods.
However, the local authorities still are not sure how much money a household can
earn a month for their afforestation works.
M’drak is one of the 5 poorest districts in the province due to the soil
conditions which are not suitable for high quality farm produce. However, this
is the ideal place for the forest development. It is located near the Khanh
Hoa’s ports, where there are many companies specializing in collecting
Tran Van Tuong, a worker of a factory on the upper course of the Krong Hin
River, said thanks to the good local conditions, the acacias grown by him can
have the trunk diameter of 10-12 cm after 4 years instead of 7 years. Therefore,
Tuong can have the harvest sooner than others, for which he can make a modest
profit of VND20 million per hectare.
Pham The Minh, Director of M’drak Forestry Company, which is developing 18,000
hectares of forests, including 3,000 hectares of planted forests, said the
company can earn VND500,000 for every 2 cubic meters of wood, while about 160
cubic meters can be collected from every hectare.
With such a price, Minh said, the afforestation can only help generate jobs and
green the bare hills, while it cannot bring profits. Therefore, the company is
considering shifting to grow rubber on the land.
Selling timber at a loss
Local people have been advised to plant the forests, but have not been told what
they should do to sell the timber at good prices.
It’s now the forest harvesting season in Dak Lak province. However, since there
is no timber processing factory in the locality, it’s very difficult to sell the
According to the Dak Lak provincial trade promotion center, there has been no
specific plan on using the planted forest’s timber. The operational wood
processing factories in the province mostly use natural timber.
Besides the first factory developed by Tam Phat Company in M’drak, some small
scaled factories using planted wood to make pulp are still under the
Having 259 hectares of the planted forests, including 100 hectares near the
harvesting time, H, Director of Lan Chi Company, complained that he can earn
VND35 million from every hectare of the planted forests after 8 years. If
counting on the bank loan interest rates and the inflation rate, H still cannot
recover his investment capital.
The director of Bao Lam Company which runs the afforestation project on 1,000
hectares of land, also said he has to sell timber to a MDF plant in Dak Nong
province at a low price, which made him take loss.