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Seeing the Forest for the Trees - Embassy of Finland, Dar es Salaam : Current Affairs

EMBASSY OF FINLAND, Dar es Salaam

P.O.Box 2455
Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Tel. +255-22-2196 565 (+255-754-631 688)
E-mail: sanomat.dar@formin.fi, visa.dar@formin.fi
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News, 3/21/2013

Seeing the Forest for the Trees

How can the private sector and rural communities participate and benefit from forestry? How do we improve the quality of forest products and increase the employment?

Minister and harvester: from the right Raimo Etelä (Sahayrittäjät ry), Minister Kagasheki, Merja Mäkelä (Embassy of Finland) and the real harvester driver Kristian Sohlman from Metsäorava company.Minister and harvester: from the right Raimo Etelä (Sahayrittäjät ry), Minister Kagasheki, Merja Mäkelä (Embassy of Finland) and the real harvester driver Kristian Sohlman from Metsäorava company.

These and many more questions were asked by a team of Tanzanian visitors in Finland last week. One of the visions of the visitors is to transform Tanzania from a high deforestation area to a major producer of sustainable timber and biomass energy in East Africa.

The Minister of Natural Resources and Tourism, Honorable Khamis Kagasheki visited Finland with a high power team: Esther Mkwizu (chairperson of Tanzania Business Council and the board of Tanzania Forest Service), James Lembeli (MP, chairperson of the Parliamentary Committee on Land, Environment and Natural Resources), Juma Mgoo (CEO of the Tanzania Forest Service), Engineer Arthur Lyatuu from the Ministry of Energy and Minerals and Mr. ImaniNkuwi, assistant of the Minister.

Towards a sustainable forestry sector

The aim of the visit was to see how the forestry sector is organized in Finland and how sustainable forest management can be done without compromising the social and environmental values. The role of the private sector in forestry was thoroughly discussed and emphasized as 70 percent of forests in Finland are privately owned.

The Finnish Minister for Development Cooperation, Heidi Hautala emphasized in the official and informal discussions that Finland wants to support fully the transformation of forestry sector in Tanzania to a sustainable, well-governed, high employment sector, which provides products for energy, timber and nature conservation. The current joint programmes on national forest inventory, private forestry development and community-based forestry complete each other and address the main priorities of the Tanzanian forest policy.

Visiting the Huppunen family farm sawmill with the team: from left, Raimo Etelä, Arthur Lyatuu, Esther Mkwizu, Susanna Huppunen, Minister Kagasheki, Merja Mäkelä, Imani Nkuwi, Juma Mgoo and Pentti Huppunen.Visiting the Huppunen family farm sawmill with the team: from left, Raimo Etelä, Arthur Lyatuu, Esther Mkwizu, Susanna Huppunen, Minister Kagasheki, Merja Mäkelä, Imani Nkuwi, Juma Mgoo and Pentti Huppunen.

Eye on the Business

Minister Kagasheki also gave a talk on the business opportunities in Tanzania during the Business Forum organized to attract Finnish companies to invest in Africa, and in particular to Tanzania. Opportunities are great in many areas. One of the major areas of interest is renewable energy, which is high also on the Finnish agenda. By 2020 Finland should produce 38 percent of its energy from renewable resources and biomass from wood is the major resource.

The visit was an eye-opener to the Tanzanian team and a great networking possibility between the organizations and people in Finland and Tanzania. Follow-up will be done through regular meetings between the MNRT and the Finnish Embassy in Dar es Salaam. Cooperation with the Finnish forestry organizations will be developed further also in near future.

Finnish assistance to Tanzanian forestry

Support to National Forest and Beekeeping Programme and NAFORMA

Mama Misitu Campaign

Support to Private Plantation Forests and Value Chain
 

Text: Merja Mäkelä
Photos: Pauliina Hellman

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Updated 3/21/2013


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