THE European Union (EU) plans to inject over Euros 8.5m (about sh28b) to support commercial tree growing in Uganda
THE European Union (EU) plans to inject over Euros 8.5m (about sh28b) to support commercial tree growing in Uganda.
The money will be released through EU’s Saw Log Production Grant Scheme (SPGS) in February, 2015, to support various commercial tree growing projects in the country.
The EU head of rural development, Bogdan Stefanesal, said over Euro10m (about sh33b) had been injected in the programme during the last four years to support commercial forestry in Uganda.
“Next year we shall inject over Euro 8.5m (about sh28b) because trees are dying in this country and if we do nothing, they will be gone in a few years,” he said.
Experts predict that Uganda still needs approximately 150,000 hectares of timber to cover the current tree deficit.
In 2006, the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) report indicated that Uganda had lost about 26% of its forest.
The report further revealed that the forest cover was receding at a rate of 2% annually, pushing the country’s forest cover from 4,924 million hectares in 1990 to 3,627 million in 2005.
According to the 2008 National Forestry Authority report, the total economic value of Uganda’s forests, including all marketable and non-marketable values was estimated at $304m (about sh790b) in 2004, which is about 5.2% of GDP.
EU gives sh28b to support tree planting