Forests cover over half the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) and thus have an important role to play in maintaining the high level of biodiversity, protecting water resources, preventing erosion in the mountains, mitigating climate change effects and the provisioning of a number of ecosystem services and resources for local communities. During the last 10- 15 years forests have provided substantial additional income for rural communities through jobs, firewood, non-timber forest products, hunting, and recreation. Although there are no reliable data or statistics on the benefits to society of these forests, in the postwar period they have significantly contributed to recovery and building social stability in the country. After the post-war years of poorly regulated forestry management, since early 2000 BiH has made notable progress in building a more effective forest regulatory and management system. This system has a lot of commonalities in both entities, which allows for rigorous and effective forest management in the country. At the same time the forestry sector is treated as an economic sector of secondary importance and suffers from under-budgeting and lack of political commitment.

Related Subject(s): Environment and Climate Change
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