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Community Forests to Be Upgraded for Food Security in the Deep South

23 May 2020 (Readers 282)

The Southern Border Provinces Administrative Center (SBPAC) is joining hands with the Royal Forest Department and other relevant agencies in rehabilitating and upgrading community forests in the deep South in order to generate employment and income for local residents.

SBPAC Secretary-General Rear Admiral Somkiat Pholprayoon said that SBPAC is promoting the development of community forests to increase forest areas for conservation and food security.

It has encouraged the people to plant trees on their premises, in their communities, and on public land, under the "One Subdistrict, One Public Land program. Local communities have also been encouraged to establish a "tree bank for community forest development, based on the royal approach of the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej The Great concerning the planting of three types of trees for four uses, that is, economic, agricultural, energy, and environmental uses.

According to the Royal Forest Department, there are altogether 103 community forests in the three southern border provinces of Yala, Pattani, and Narathiwat, and four districts of Songkhla (Chana, Thepha, Na Thawi, and Saba Yoi).

Today, model community forests have been developed in 38 local villages. These villages are located in five districts of Narathiwat, four districts of Yala, three districts of Pattani, and two districts of Songkhla.

The community forests in these villages are being rehabilitated, so that local people can make a living and earn money from the forests. This program will also cope with the continued returning of many Thai people in the deep South from Malaysia.

SBPAC expects that the upgrading of the community forests will bear fruit within 2021. The areas around the forests will also be expanded and developed to generate employment and income for the people.

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