Supporting Turkey’s Forestry Activities with National Budget

Supporting Turkey’s Forestry Activities with National Budget


 Why is a National Forest Fund so important and relevant in Turkey? (In terms of strategy guideline, governance, oversight, capitalization, utilization, etc…and in terms of leader for international funds?…)

  1. In Turkey, with a very few exception (20.000 hectares)  all forest belong to the State. According to the Turkish Constitution the government is responsible to protect, manage, restore, rehabilitate, afforest  and harvest the forest with a forest management plans.
  2. According to the official data and there are 7 million people living inside or close to the forestry areas. These are called “forest villagers” . These people are not tribes or local communities with the international terminology but there are villages and people are living there with strong connections to cities or towns. The forestry agencies should provide them wood for building, for cooking and warming.
  3. Every Ministry and agency like General Directorate of Forestry has “Strategic Plans” with line of their guiding legislations. They are being renewed when the Cabinet changes.
  4.  Turkey is also very active for hosting international organization like UNFF, Forest Europe, and World Forestry Congress and is a part of all relevant international process.
  5. The entire budget required for above mentioned activities and to manage the agencies, salaries etc. come from National Budget and revolving capital. These are not called National Forest Fund but the implementations are alike.

– What are the main targets of the NFF in Turkey and what are the links with the forestry strategy in Turkey?

  1. Apart from the legislations and other internal documents, the Turkey’s National Forestry Program has been prepared for the years of 2004-2023 with a project supported by FAO[1]. (TCP/TUR/0066 (A))
  2. Beside this program, under the general responsibility of the Ministry of Development[2], “The National Development Plans-NDP[3]” have been prepared. The existing one is for 2014-2018.  NDPs are subject to be approved by the Cabinet and published at official gazette[4]. As a part of this NDP, working group’s reports have been prepared with the participation of different stakeholders. So, “The Sustainable Forest Management Working Group’s Report[5] of the Tenth Development Plan, 2014-2018” is the existing national guiding one.
  3. The General Directorate of Forestry is the main body for forestry issues. It has also Strategic Plan for 2013-2017. The Strategic Goals defined at this plan are as follows:
    1. Protection of forests
    2. Development and expansion of forests
    3. Utilization from forests resources
    4.  Institutional capacity development


– What about the coordination and collaboration between several institutions like (for example) ministry of finance and ministry in charge of forests to build and to lead the NFF in Turkey?

  1. The Ministry of Forest and Water Affairs is the ministry in charge of
  2. Under this Ministry there are three General Directorates namely;
    1. General Directorate of Nature Protection and National Parks (GDNPNP)-
    2. General Directorate of Combating Desertification and Erosion(GDCDE)-
    3. General Directorate of Forests(GDF)- . GDF has independent legal entity with regard to its budget from the Ministry. The first two ones are under the Ministry.
  3. The Ministry of Development  and the Ministry of Finance are the main partners with regard to budget. Ministry of Development is responsible and has the right of approving annual programs. Ministry of Finance is responsible to find adequate money.
  4. The system works like this way; for annual programs the Ministry of Forest prepare its plans then negotiate with the Ministry of Development. When they agree The Ministry of Finance come to negotiate.  When three Ministries agreed then they apply to the Parliament for final approval.

– What are the schedule and the main “appointments” regarding NNFs in Turkey?


  1. For the year of 2016, the annual budget for forestry issues is roughly 2 billion USD.  It includes the three Directorates above mentioned.
  2. Approximately 50 million is for GDNPNP and GDCDE. The other is for General Directorate of Forests. (1,950 million USD)
  3. It includes the personal fees, fire, afforestation, supporting the forest villages, international programs etc.



Prepared by:

İsmail BELEN

Senior Expert of Forest and Water Affaires


Letters for Future