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Research Report

The Assessment and Monitoring of Forest Resources and Forestry Products Statistics in China

Liu Dachang
Christian Cossalter
Copyright Date: Jan. 1, 2006
Pages: 22
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Table of Contents

  1. (pp. 1-1)

    Reliable and timely information on the state of forest resources, including forest area and forest area change, growing stock, biodiversity, wood and non-wood products, the use of forests for recreation and for environment services and the contribution of forests to the national economy, is essential for policy formulation and development, as well as for program planning (FAO 2005, Sayer et al. 1997). The need for reliable data presents a great challenge, as traditional methods of gathering forestry statistics have often failed to provide accurate information. For example, in developing countries inventories provide reliable data for only 14% of the forest...

  2. (pp. 1-7)

    China has developed an integrated assessment and monitoring system to assess forest resources and monitor changes. The system includes three components:

    a forest inventory and assessment,

    an annual plantation establishment review, and

    an annual wood consumption survey.

    Forest inventory and assessment are conducted on three levels to meet different information needs:

    a national forest inventory (NFI) (senlin-ziyaun-qingcha, lianxu-qingcha, or yilei-diaocha)

    an inventory for forest management planning and design (guihua-sheji-diaocha or erleidiaocha)

    an inventory for forest operational planning (zuoye-sheji-diaocha or sanlei-diaocha)

    This section addresses each type of forest inventory, with a focus on the national forest inventory, the annual wood consumption...

  3. (pp. 7-9)

    China collects and tabulates forestry statistics annually in a wide range of fields. Tree crops (tea, fruits, mulberry for silk raising, rubber, coffee, coconut, oil palm and cashew nut) are considered part of agriculture so the Ministry of Agriculture collects and tabulates data on them. The State Forestry Administration collects the following fields of forestry statistical data, covering almost all aspects of forestry (SFA 1998).


    Forest industry

    Employment in forestry sector (excluding farmer households)

    Fixed asset investment in forestry sector

    Gross output value of forestry sector

    Diversified economy in forest regions

    Forestry education

    Forestry research

    Collective forest farms and...

  4. (pp. 9-10)

    Forestry statistics are mainly collected and compiled to inform policy formulation, strategic planning and other decision-making for the forestry sector and related sectors. Forestry statistics are also provided to other users through publications and sometimes in news conferences.

    Information on forest resources is released in

    China Forestry Yearbook. First published in 1986, it covers highlights and achievements, including forest assessment and monitoring activities, by year, and data on forest resources from NFIs.

    China Forestry Resources. First published in 2005, it provides data from the sixth NFI.

    Publications on forestry products include:

    China Forestry Statistics 1949-1987.

    China Forestry Statistics. Published annually...

  5. (pp. 10-10)

    This section briefly discusses how China’s forestry statistical system may be improved to effectively serve national and international information needs.

    Although it has been evolving, China’s NFI scheme needs further improvement and enhancement to meet the expanding need for information on forest resources expressed in the IUFRO’s International Guidelines for Forest Monitoring. The NFI should expand its capacity to generate data on most (if not all) variables presented in the Guidelines, including biomass, biodiversity, and disturbances affecting forest health and vitality¹. Active interaction of the leading forest inventory institutes and researchers in the area with their international counterparts, including the...