PR No. 232 Islamabad

President Mamnoon Hussain has said that forests are precious asset of Pakistan and it is imperative to ensure their protection and increase the forest cover in the country in accordance with the international benchmarks. The President underlined that forests play a critical role in reversing the adverse effects of climate change adding that forests are also important in national economic stability and minimizing environmental degradation.

The President said this while addressing a ceremony at the Aiwan-e-Sadr to kick off annual Spring Tree Plantation Campaignon Tuesday.

The President stated that the importance of tree plantation can be gauged from the fact that our religion admonishes damaging the trees and forests even during the wars. The President said that the federal and provincial governments were making efforts to not only control felling of trees but also increase its plantation but noted that poverty, increasing population and rising prices of timber are some of the obstacles to this end and called for adopting unconventional measures to increase tree plantation.

The President said that Pakistan also observes International Day of Forests which is reflective of our resolve to protect forests. The President stressed on devising effective strategy to protect forests and further increase forest cover in the country like planting saplings along railway lines, canals and roads.

Highlighting the significance of tree plantation, the President noted that forests are also the biggest source to prevent floods and protect the fertile land from water logging and salinity. The President called for using modern plantation methods and promoting plantation of local trees to increase forest cover. The President said that the government would continue to extend all possible assistance to the provinces in this regard to attain target of planting saplings. The President said that such campaigns create awareness among the people about the importance of trees and forests. The President also planted a sapling to kick off tree plantation campaign.

Separately, First Lady Begum Mahmooda Mamnoon Hussain also planted a sapling as part of the tree plantation campaign. Mayor Islamabad, high officials of the Aiwan-e-Sadr and CDA were also present on the occasion.