The Forestry Research Institute of Ghana (FORIG) has launched a strategic plan to promote efficient management of the nation’s natural forests and biodiversity conservation.

Dr. Daniel Aniagyei Ofori, the Director, said the other goals of the plan included developing technologies for plantation forestry and the mobilization, generation, processing and dissemination of information critical to the management of the forest resources.

This ties in with the effort to position FORIG as a leading research institution to strengthen its contribution to the protection of the forest and its resources.

The formal launch of the plan coincided with the annual review meeting held with key stakeholders of the Institute at Fumesua near Kumasi.

“Making forestry research relevant to end users” was the theme chosen for the three-day meeting.

Dr. Ofori said they were focusing on three priority areas – sustainable resource management, climate change adaptation and mitigation and livelihood improvement.

This involved engaging in “research for development, resource mobilization, visibility of FORIG, capacity building and systems management”.

He said the Institute was taking deliberate steps to link up with key stakeholders to make its research activities demand-driven and commercially viable.

Dr. Ofori identified inadequate staff, ageing equipment and laboratory facilities as well as the lack of funding to undertake research activities, as some of the challenges facing the Institute.

To enable the Institute to generate income to fund its projects, it was now undertaking a number of commercial activities, he added.

He mentioned among these the establishment of seedlings for sale, contracts and consultancy services and plantation development.

He underlined the determination of the Institute to continue to work with the key stakeholders to become more relevant to the needs of society.

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