EU PROVIDES 3.3 MLN USD TO GROUP IN CAMBODIA FOR FOREST RESOURCES PROTECTION

PHNOM PENH, Cambodia -- The European Union (EU) on Monday provided 3.3 million U.S. dollars to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF-Cambodia) for a project supporting the sustainable management of the rich forest resources in northeastern Cambodia's Mondulkiri province.

The five-year project (2018-2022) is aimed to strengthen the role and participation of Cambodian forest dependent communities in improved governance, inclusive policy dialogue, and natural resources conservation in the province, said a joint statement.

The beneficiaries of the project will be 2,000 households located in 34 villages inside two adjacent national protected areas - Srepok Wildlife Sanctuary and Phnom Prich Wildlife Sanctuary - in Mondulkiri province, the statement said.

It added that those two wildlife sanctuaries cover almost 6,000 sq-km and provide agriculture and non-timber forest products-based subsistence livelihoods to over 30,000 people, including 8,000 indigenous people.

EU Ambassador to Cambodia George Edgar said the project would contribute to the efforts of the Cambodian government on protected areas management and sustainable development in Mondulkiri.

"To make the project succeed, we encourage more effective law enforcement against illegal logging and poaching which threaten the integration of these unique landscapes and undermine local livelihoods," he said, adding that the project will begin in early 2018.

WWF-Cambodia country director Seng Teak said empowering these communities to sustainably manage the forest resources, at the same time, increasing their well-being is the way forwards for protecting forests and biodiversity.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK