Sustainability of sawn timber supply in Tanzania

  • Wells J
  • Wall D
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Abstract

Timber is an important commodity in African towns. This paper reports
the findings from research into the supply of timber to Dar es Salaam
and Mwanza (Tanzania). Tanzania has reserves of hardwood timber in the
natural forest and softwood timber in plantations. Information gathered
from consumers, producers and traders was used to estimate consumption,
analyse changing patterns of supply and assess sustainability. Analysis
of the hardwood supply system (presented as a sub-sector diagram) found
it to be `slippery', evolving in response to diminishing resources and a
cumbersome and ineffective regulatory regime. With the advent of
pit-sawing and other changes, control over the cutting of timber in the
natural forest has been lost. Regaining control is unlikely unless
effective local community participation can be established. Sustainable
management in the plantations is achievable and offers the best chance
of ensuring a supply of timber to meet future demands.

Author-supplied keywords

  • pit-sawing
  • regulation
  • sustainability
  • tanzania
  • timber

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Authors

  • J Wells

  • D Wall

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