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Author: Thomas R. Waggener
Forestry and forest products in the People’s Republic of China is a large and complex subject – just as China itself is large. The contemporary ties between the forestry and forest products community in China and the College of Forest Resources at the University of Washington formally began in 1980 with the April 24th visit to Seattle by a senior PRC forestry delegation led by Luo Yuchuan, then Minister of Forestry. This delegation included twelve senior officials of the Ministry of Forestry, leading Chinese forestry educational and research institutions, and professional forestry organizations in the People’s Republic of China. Five extended visits to the PRC, by the author, together with numerous return visits by foresters, educators, and officials to Washington State have contributed greatly to an understanding of the Chinese people and forestry sector.
China’s longstanding forestry goal is to increase the commercial forest estate to 20 percent of the land base, or to approximately 192 million ha. of productive forest. Forestry, forest products sector, international trade, and consumption policies are all undergoing rapid and continuous change as China seeks to revamp its economy, and spur economic growth and development. Wood imports can be expected to play a growing role in balancing national domestic supply and consumption.