RECOFTC ສປປ ລາວ

Lao PDR celebrates National Arbor Day 2024 with communities leading plantation efforts

Tree planting ceremony at Khoklouang village.
Tree planting ceremony at Khoklouang village.

1 June 2024 marked the 44th celebration of National Arbor Day in Lao PDR. In Bokeo Province, RECOFTC Lao PDR participated in national planting activities with communities in Khoklouang and Houythong villages. The planting efforts showcased the collective spirit involved in protecting and restoring natural forests. Tree saplings were planted across one hectare of forest land in each village. "We believe that planting just one tree today can make a difference in the future,” said a community member from Khoklouang, who was participating in the event.

We also conducted a climate change mitigation campaign and participated in a planting activity in Phouphanang National Protected Area, which spans 3.4 hectares. RECOFTC Lao PDR organized the campaign in collaboration with the Department of Forestry (DoF), Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (MAF) and other development partners.

Community members and staff from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Department of Forestry and RECOFTC pose in front of the photo booth.
Community members and staff from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Department of Forestry and RECOFTC pose in front of the photo booth. 

A RECOFTC booth at Phouphanang (pictured below) drew community members and staff from DoF and MAF.  Posting on a bulletin board, participants noted messages stating, "There is little awareness of the value of forests”, “The focus on short-term benefits leads to forest destruction” and “There is an urgent need for widespread awareness-building efforts, especially among youth”.

Forest restoration is a key component of the landscape approach being implemented by RECOFTC in Lao PDR. These have been implemented through several projects in Bokeo and Xayabouly provinces since 2018. Our initiatives cover village forest management, teak registration, forest fire management and nurseries and seedlings. They also include annual tree planting events at the central and local levels.

Through our work, we support efforts to increase forest cover in Lao PDR. The government aims to increase forest cover to 70 percent of its total land area by 2035. It has accordingly implemented laws and policies aimed at protecting and restoring its forests to ensure they provide sustainable livelihoods and ecological services. 

Lao PDR’s afforestation ambition is part of its efforts to green the economy, create sustainable livelihoods, combat climate change and protect biodiversity. However, the road to achieving increased forest cover is not without its challenges. Increasing land clearance for mono-cropping and the risk of forest fires are among the most pressing issues. Community engagement and government support are critical to facing these challenges. 


RECOFTC’s work is made possible with the support of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation and the Government of Sweden.