On December 19, 2013 INBAR Director General Dr. Coosje Hoogendoorn greeted India’s Minister of Environment and Forests, H.E. Jayanthi Natarajan.
Asian nations gathered last week for INBAR’s Asia Regional Bamboo and Rattan Workshop in Delhi.
Twelve Asian countries were represented at the conference, including nine INBAR member countries, with more than 100 international and Indian participants in attendance overall. Honourable Jayanthi Natarajan, the Minister of Environment and Forests (MOEF), took an active role in the conference by presenting the opening remarks. She commented the on her hopes to deepen India’s partnership with INBAR through an institutional contribution.
“The very values on which our mandate is based and what we’re striving for are what INBAR is also striving for,” said Honourable Natarajan. “I’m pleased to inform you that MOEF is pursuing the matter regarding the government of India becoming an institutional partner of INBAR.”
The purpose of the workshop was to provide an opportunity to exchange and disseminate the many varied opportunities for green growth that bamboo and rattan resources can provide. These materials present possibilities for inclusive and green development through coordinated strengthening of scientific, technical and human resources. The three days were used to chart a roadmap for the bamboo and rattan sector in Asia for the next ten years.
The Minister expressed in her remarks that the need to combat climate change is inextricably intertwined with poverty alleviation, two issues that both India and INBAR are working to address together.
“These simple words hide a deep wealth of input and effort towards sustainable development and inclusive growth,” she said.
Participants discussed the role of bamboo and rattan in enhancing livelihoods, as vehicles for green growth and the role of bamboo in climate change adaptation and mitigation. They also discussed policy initiatives and value-chain development.
While bamboo and rattan are found all over the world, Asia is presently the main source of the international trade of bamboo and rattan. China is the main source of bamboo products, Indonesia is the major trader in rattan products, and Vietnam and the Philippines are exporting both bamboo and rattan products. In India the export of bamboo and rattan products is starting to develop, while at the national level the country is seeking to further optimize the sustainable use of the estimated nearly 14 million ha of bamboo-containing forest in the country, which is already providing employment to 20 million people. (ISFR-2011 Report)