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The current forest of Lao PDR decreased to 9.8 million ha in 2002 from 11.2 million ha in 1992 with an average loss of 134,000 ha per annum or equivalent to 0.6% of the total land area. If this reduction rate continues, the current forest area will decrease to 7.4 million ha (31.3% of the total land) by 2020. Upper Mixed Deciduous Forest, which is the dominant forest type occupying 56 % of current forest in 2002, was significantly reduced. Most deforestation in the country is related to expansion of shifting cultivation both subsistent and commercial logging as well as commercial tree plantations i.e. rubbers. Infrastructure development - hydropower schemes, power lines, expansion of district and province centers also contributed to forest loss. Forest degradation due to forest fragmentation has increased with small forest compartments having increased as a proportion of the total forest area from 0.9% in 1992 to 6.7% at present, while large forest compartments (larger than 1,000 ha) have decreased from 88% to 54%.  Nevertheless, the government aims to achieve 70% forest cover by 2020 by promoting reforestation through land zoning, provision of alternative ways of production to shifting cultivators and so on.

Forest lands in Lao PDR are also at the centre of land-use conflicts for their important capital for industrial use and commercial crop production. Plantation concessions allocated to the state, army and foreign concessionaires have resulted in land conflicts and outbreaks of violence.

Lao PDR joined the UN-REDD Programme in October 2012, and will benefit from regional trainings and workshops, and participation in the UN-REDD Programme Community of Practice. In 2012 an initial gaps and opportunities analysis was conducted.  Results identified as priorities for UN-REDD support: mechanisms to ensure the full and effective participation of all stakeholders; and approaches to address multiple benefits, especially combining carbon and biodiversity. 

Programme Activity Updates

Lao PDR and Morocco Join the UN-REDD Programme

November 2012

The UN-REDD Programme is now working with 46 partner countries across Africa, Asia-Pacific and Latin America and the Caribbean.
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Asia-Pacific Communications materials

Technical reports 

Workshop reports 

National Programme Document
and Semi-Annual reports

Studies and other publications 


Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry

  Minh Pham 
UN Resident Coordinator, Lao PDR

Savan Chanthakummane                 National REDD+ Focal Point/ Director of REDD+ Office, Department of Forestry,    Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry         chanthakoummane_2012@yahoo.com

  Khamsene Ounekham                                Planning Division, Department of Forestry, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry                                                         khamseneok@gmail.com 


Kinnalone Phommasack                             National Programme Manager kinnalone.ph@gmail.com 

  Tim Boyle
Regional Coordinator, UNDP

Thomas Enters
UN-REDD Regional Coordinator, UNEP
  Ben Vickers
Regional Programme Officer, FAO
  Singha Ounniyom                                       UNDP, Lao PDR singha.ounniyom@undp.org