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China - Integrated Forestry Development Project (English)

Ratings for the Integrated Forestry Development Project for China were as follows: outcomes were satisfactory, the risk to development outcome was low and negligible, the Bank performance was satisfactory, and the Borrower performance was also satisfactory. Some lessons learned included: Indicators and targets should be better aligned with the project activities despite having a broader impact on programmatic results. The extension of training opportunities far beyond the direct beneficiary institution contributes to increasing the ‘value for money’ of the Lidar data. Although sector driven, Lidar projects should contemplate the capacity building inside key government institution for remote sensing. Maximizing reach of data into the public domain remains a challenge. (i) Projects which are firmly anchored in national policy frameworks and local development strategies enjoy strong political support and this enhances their chances of success. This was achieved in this project since the central PMO was based in the State Forest Administration responsible for the national level policy, while the project was fully aligned with the provincial forest strategies. (ii) When a project contemplates a change of cultural practice, project staff require intensive guidance and training during start up to ensure that they fully understand what is required. This may need time and close monitoring. Site demonstration has proved to be a very effective way to persuade farmers to transfer from conventional monoculture silviculture to multiple use, mixed species forest management. (iii)The output-based disbursement used for plantation activities that was conducted by communities is an effective tool to ensure that the required quality standards are achieved in the field. Output based disbursement also simplified the disbursement process which could be useful for broad rural community development projects.(iv)Farmers are more willing to adopt multifunction, mixed species afforestation with environmental benefits when short rotation crops with early cash generating potential are included in the planting mix. Forest landscape restoration with a combination of strategies that include both ecological environmental conservation and landowner economic benefits proved to be very effective in maintaining farmer interest. In Shanxi, a comprehensive watershed management approach was adopted to control soil erosion of hilly and gully areas of Loess Plateau, with a focus on ecological system restoration and stability on the upper and middle slopes and land used for sustainable production on the low flat areas to local farmers’ livelihood improvement. This also proved to be a suitable model that maintained farmer interest.(v) The participation of farmers and ethnic minorities in the project planning process, and including activities which respond to their needs, will strengthen ownership and interest in a project, and enhance its prospects for sustainability and success; (vi)In widely dispersed projects with diverse geographical and social conditions, flexibility in project implementation is needed to ensure that interventions are appropriate to local conditions and needs; (vii) In rapidly developing economies where the dynamics of land use are changing, it is challenging for preparation missions to accurately predict land availability for project use (planting) several years into the future. Risk Assessment should pay more attention to this to ensure that adequate mitigation measures are put in place to cater for possible shortfalls;(viii)Land titling which provides security of land tenure is popular with farmers who regard it as an essential pre-requisite to making long term investments in forestry and tree crops; (ix)Where farmers wish to form producer associations, helping them to do so through the provision of basic, needs-based training and inputs is an effective way of improving product quality, profitability and farmer income.

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China - Integrated Forestry Development Project (English). Washington, D.C. : World Bank Group. http://documents.worldbank.org/curated/en/642481499286798341/China-Integrated-Forestry-Development-Project