New Delhi: To cut down on its import bill, the government on Thursday promulgated the Indian Forest (Amendment) Ordinance, 2017 which will exempt bamboo grown in non-forest areas from the requirement of felling and transit permit for its economic use.
At present, India imports timber and allied products, such as pulp, paper, furniture etc and in 2015 alone India imported about 18.01 million cubic meters of timber and allied products which were worth Rs43,000 crore.
Thus it is a significant move for India which has the largest area under bamboo in the world and is second richest country after China in terms of bamboo genetic resource.
In India, current demand of bamboo is estimated at 28 million tonnes and it has 19% share of world’s area under bamboo cultivation while its market share in the sector is only 6%.
“The amendment will help in addressing some of these issues, besides meeting the demand from domestic production," said an official statement.
The ordinance was given assent by the President of India Ram Nath Kovind on Thursday after the union cabinet led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday approved the promulgation of the ordinance for amendment of Section 2(7) of the Indian Forest Act, 1927.