With USD 180, 000 in grants from Ikea, the World Wild Fund (WWF) Laos and the National Agriculture and Forestry Institution has signed of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) securing financing of the third phase of the sustainable rattan production and harvesting project.
Together with the WWF, Ikea supports sustainable production of rattan in Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and Indonesia.
“After the first two phases of developing best practices for the rattan supply chain, rattan forest management and establishing market links, we are now focusing on expanding he FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) certified areas and strengthening the sustainable rattan supply chain”, said WWF Laos’s Country Director Somphone Bouasavanh.
This three-year project will ensure sustainable management of 20,000 ha of rattan forest in two districts, Khamkeut and Bolikhan, in the Bolikhamxay province and two districts, Lamam and Thateng, in the Sekong province.
By 2014, 20,000 ha of sustainable managed rattan forests will be FSC certified and able to supply 200 tonnes of commercial rattan canes. The harvested rattan will be processed by local communities and exported by CoC certified manufacturers to the market in Europe.
“This creates jobs and generates income for local communities who mostly rely heavily on natural resources”, added WWF Laos’s Rattan Project Manager Bouavanh Phachomphonh.