Natural resource management

Forest and Rural Income Sources in the Kyrgyz Republic - Capacity Development (PROFOR)

Kyrgyzstan is a mountainous country, in which, in comparison with other natural resources, forest resources are presented in small quantities. But, despite the fact that only a small area of ​​our country is covered with forests, they are rich in biodiversity and are an integral part of the ecosystem. Forests not only play an extremely important protective and ecological role, but also are a source of valuable forest products, which are especially important in the daily life of the population living near them. Non-timber forest resources - wild berries, medicinal herbs, nuts, fruits, mushrooms - have a great influence on the socio-economic development of the communities living near the forests. Residents harvest firewood, feed for pets, graze livestock in the forests and produce various products from the harvested fruits. For many, especially the poor and women, the collection and use of non-timber forest resources brings significant income to their family budget.

Key facts
Years of implementation:   2010-2011
Place of implementation:   Chui, Jalal-Abad and Batken regions
Donor:   World Bank
Partner: local forestry enterprises, Chon-Kemin National Park, Kok-Oirok Jamaat

Objective of the project
Examining the institutional and market constraints that prevent members of local communities living in and around forests from increasing their income from the use of forest resources, especially non-timber forest products.
The research under the project was aimed at studying the formal and informal relationships between forestry and local communities, the needs and expectations of both parties, and exploring possible partnership mechanisms that are most effective in using non-timber forest products.

Main beneficiaries of the project
the government of Kyrgyzstan, residents of local communities living in and around forests.

Selected forestry
- State National Natural Park "Chon-Kemin" in the Chui region
- Zhayil forestry enterprise in Chui region
- Toskool-Ata forestry in Jalal-Abad oblast
- Toktogul forestry enterprise in Jalal-Abad region
- Batken forestry in Batken region

The research was carried out in three directions
The first is to analyze the role of the formal institutions involved in forest management in reviewing the legal framework for forest management, as well as the work of forestry in general.
Second: the study of formal and informal mechanisms of forest resources management, official and actual regimes of forest resources use, research of the social capital of communities near or on the territory of forests and their role in the management and use of forest resources.
Third: examining the value chain - from forest resource types that are important for local community income to domestic and foreign markets and exporters - to determine how value is generated from certain forest resources, along with assessing structural or other issues.

Project results
The results of the study were combined into a single analysis with legal and institutional recommendations to take into account the interests of the leshoz, local communities and aiyl okmotu in the management and use of forest resources based on mutually acceptable and beneficial access to forest and non-wood forest products.
At the end of the project, a stakeholder workshop was organized, where the results of the study were presented, issues on further joint initiatives were discussed, as well as recommendations for changes at the legislative level.