World Bank hails progress on forestry development project in Belarus

Belarus Forestry Minister Vitaly Drozhzha met with World Bank Country Manager for Belarus Alex Kremer to review the results of a working visit of a team of WB experts to Belarus, BelTA learned from the press service of the Forestry Ministry.

Alex Kramer noted that the experts from the World Bank had no substantive remarks to the work of Belarusian specialists. Two modern greenhouse forest-seed centers have been built to grow seedlings with root system. The third such facility is to be commissioned soon. Thanks to the loan from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the forestries have upgraded their fleets of multi-operational and fire-fighting equipment.

Forestry Minister Vitaly Drozhzha said that acquiring multi-operational equipment was important to fight bark beetles. “I am sure that during the visit the World Bank experts were able to see the work we are doing and to make sure that the loan has been used efficiently,” he added.

During the meeting it was announced that the World Bank has changed the project supervisor. Vladislava Nemova has replaced Andrew Mitchell. When talking about his work in Belarus, Andrew Mitchell said that those years were very important for him. “I was happy to see two new forest nurseries built as part of the project. Once again I would like to highlight the high professionalism of the personnel of both the Forestry Ministry of Belarus and the industry in general. I am impressed with the high level of implementation of all our projects and forest management in whole,” the expert added.

Belarus became a member of the World Bank in 1992. For its Forestry Sector Development Project, Belarus received a $40.7 million loan from the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development a $2.7 million grant of the Global Environment Facility. In April 2018, the World Bank and the Forestry Ministry of Belarus signed an agreement on an additional loan of €12 million.

Belarus' forestry development project aims to improve the efficiency of forest management and forest restoration, expand the use of forest residues and increase the contribution of forests to achieving public goods.



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