پتانسیل دارایی های عمومی از جنگلداری جامعه در نپال
|کد مقاله||سال انتشار||تعداد صفحات مقاله انگلیسی||ترجمه فارسی|
|10895||2012||9 صفحه PDF||سفارش دهید|
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Publisher : Elsevier - Science Direct (الزویر - ساینس دایرکت)
Journal : Ecological Economics, Volume 73, 15 January 2012, Pages 113–121
This paper explores the public finance potential of community forestry in Nepal on the basis of a comprehensive dataset on forest revenue and expenditures of 41 randomly selected community-forest user groups (CFUG) from Gorkha district. The results show that CFUG income distribution is highly skewed; the high- and low-income one-third of CFUGs in the sample account for 74.3 and 4.1% of the total income, respectively. CFUG income depends on age of the CFUG institution, CFUG membership size, and, in particular, on whether the community forest features the valuable timber species Sal (Shorea robusta, C. F. Gaertn.) and/or Chir Pine (Pinus roxburghii Sarg.). CFUG expenditure pattern is also highly skewed, with 85.2% of all public services and infrastructure financed by the one-third high-income CFUGs. CFUG financing of public services and infrastructure is shaped by income, management costs, and socio-political and contextual factors, such as whether the CFUG jurisdiction covers several wards and the presence of existing public infrastructure in the community. Finally, results show that the amounts of revenue generated through community forestry are negligible when compared to households' private gains from extraction of products from community forests, indicating a limited potential for redistribution of benefits under the current taxation system.
This article is concerned with equity aspects of local forest revenue collection and distribution in community-based forest management in Nepal. Community-based or participatory approaches to forest management are highly important to the fate of forests and people in the developing world. The share of forests in developing countries managed under community-based approaches is increasing and is currently estimated at around 22% (Sunderlin et al., 2008). Over the past few decades, the scope of the international research and policy debate on community-based approaches to forest management has developed from an original focus on resource conservation to include concerns for rural poverty alleviation (Brown et al., 2002 and Ribot et al., 2010). This has resulted in an increasing body of research indicating that community-based forest management approaches tend to disfavour poor and forest dependent individuals, through the setting and enforcement of rules that limit their access to forest products (Adhikari et al., 2004, Lund and Treue, 2008 and Saito-Jensen et al., 2010). This research also indicates that affluent community members tend to gain and maintain access under community-based management regimes. Redistribution through local taxation of forest use is one way to counter the deepening of inequalities associated with community-based forest management. Taxation of affluent community members' use of forest products could finance pro-poor investments at the community level that would counter or off-set the negative effects of increased access restrictions. This aspect is ignored in many studies of the livelihood impacts of community forestry (Adhikari et al., 2004 and Adhikari and Lovett, 2006). Research from various contexts has, however, demonstrated that the values redistributed in this manner can represent substantial contributions to the financing of much-needed public services and infrastructure at the local level in developing countries (Bigombe-Logo, 2003, Fométe, 2001 and Lund, 2007). Hence, research that explores the public finance potential – by which we mean the magnitude of forest revenue collected and the degree to which it finances local public services and infrastructure – is warranted. This study contributes to our knowledge about the public finance potential of community forestry in Nepal. Based on a comprehensive data set on CFUG income and expenditures from a random sample of 41 mid-Hill CFUGs in Gorkha District, Nepal, the study provides new empirical insights into the financial potential of community forestry. Furthermore, the study presents theory-led regression analyses of factors affecting CFUG income and the share of expenditures that finance public services and infrastructure at the local level. Findings indicate that the public finance potential of community forestry in the mid-Hills of Nepal is diminutive when compared to member households' private gains from harvesting of forest products. The CFUG income distribution is highly skewed and dependent on presence of high value timber species, the size of the CFUG membership, and the age of the CFUG. Financing of public services and infrastructure is also highly skewed towards high-income CFUGs and is furthermore shaped by management costs and socio-political and contextual factors, such as whether the CFUG jurisdiction covers several wards and the presence of public infrastructure in the community. The paper proceeds as follows. Section 2 briefly outlines the existing evidence on the public finances of community-forestry in Nepal. In Section 3, the study area and data collection methods are presented. Section 4 provides a description of the income and expenditure models used to draw out the factors that affect income and expenditure patterns of the CFUGs. In Section 5 the results are presented focusing on descriptive statistics and the income and expenditure model results. In Section 6 the results are compared to findings in previous studies and their implications are discussed with an aim to draw out relevant policy recommendations. Finally, in Section 7 we provide conclusions. All figures are given in Nepal Rupees (Rs).1
نتیجه گیری انگلیسی
This paper provides new evidence on the public finance potential of community forestry in the mid-Hills of Nepal. Reporting detailed data on income and expenditure patterns and being based on a random sample of CFUGs from Gorkha district, Nepal, the paper shows; that the public finance potential has been overestimated by previous studies; that financing of public services and infrastructure is highly skewed towards a few high-income CFUGs, and, finally; that the amounts of public revenue generated by the CFUGs are miniscule as compared to CFUG member households' private gains from community forests. CFUG income is dependent on larger forest areas with valuable timber species, implying that this could be in focus when establishing new CFUGs. Where possible, low quality CFUG forests could be enriched with such species to increase the value of the forest products' flow and revenue from these forests in the long run. Such efforts should, however, only proceed with due consideration of the reliance of people on a wide range of forest products from community forests. The insignificance of the public revenue raised when compared to private gains of community forestry indicates that the current taxation of forest products does not contribute significantly towards redistribution of benefits at the community level. Changes to the rules governing access and/or taxation of forest products from community forests could induce more equity in community forestry. Again such changes should be made with careful consideration of variation in local forest use patterns to assure that they are actually pro-poor. Finally, the result that income net of forest management and administration expenditures is significantly and positively correlated with the share of expenditure that finances public services and infrastructure indicates that financing of public services and infrastructure is only given priority when costs for forest management and administration are covered. This again constitutes an argument for the establishment of larger management units. The finding that financing of public services and infrastructure is significantly reduced in CFUGs spanning over more wards, however, constitutes an important qualification that suggests that differences based on party politics, ethnicity, and caste inhibit agreement on investments in public services and infrastructure in CFUGs. It suggests that new CFUGs should be formed within individual wards as far as practicable with due attention to secondary users and that measures to improve the coordination of such investments should be taken in relation to existing CFUGs. Acknowledgements We would like to thank Carsten Smith-Hall and Helle O. Larsen for guidance at the beginning of this study, and Narayan Prasad Gautam, Baburam Lamichhanne and Ambika Khatiwada for assistance in data collection and processing. We thank the participants to the conference of the Centre for International Forestry Research held in Montpellier, France 24–26 March, 2010 and Moeko Saito-Jensen and Bo Jellesmark Thorsen for constructive comments. Thanks are due to the District Forest Office Gorkha for making CFUG records available to us. We gratefully acknowledge the assistance of CFUG key respondents and community members for their collaboration and assistance. We acknowledge financial support from the Consultative Research Committee (FFU) at the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (grant no. 104.Dan.8.L.716) and The Danish Council for Independent Research—Social Sciences (j.no. 09-063842). All views and any errors of interpretation remain our responsibility.