On March 26, 2018, the first stage of the National Forest Forum, organized under the auspices of the State Duma, was held in Izhevsk. This is the first exit all-Russian platform where representatives of the legislative and executive authorities engage in dialogue with representatives of the forestry professional community. The forum is organized with the support of Federal Forestry Agency and the Ministry of Agriculture.

The National Association of Timber Industry «Russian Forest» has actively participated in the preparation of the Forum, as well as in all sessions.

«We are grateful to the leadership of the Republic of Udmurtia for accepting the first stage of the National Forest Forum in their capital. Today at the forum we have gathered all interested people using forest resources to give them the opportunity to express their professional opinion. For the State Duma, it is extremely important to pass laws based on real facts. This contributes to improving the quality of legislative activity», - said Nikolai Nikolayev, Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Natural Resources, Property and Land Relations. He recalled that recently there have been quite significant changes in forest legislation, including in the field of forest industry, which contribute to the development of the industry.

The head of the Federal Forestry Agency, Ivan Valentik, noted that there are indeed dynamically developing «sub-sectors» of the forest complex today. Among them, he singled out logging. But he also noted the problematic side of this area of forest management, which is reforestation. According to the head of Federal Forestry Agency, the technologies used today are outdated, and modern methods are not enough to implement the guaranteed reproduction of forests. There are also other problems that need to be solved - issues of legislative regulation of the use of wild plants and non-timber forest resources, eco-tourism and hunting management. All these topics were actively discussed at the forum as part of the work of thematic sites.

For example, when discussing the prospects for improving legislation on hunting, forum participants noted that a significant list of problems had accumulated, to the discussion of which it is necessary to attract wide attention of the professional community at subsequent stages of the forum in other districts.

«The National Forest Forum is held in the format of a system discussion on the use of all forest resources, not only economic, but also environmental, social, recreational. Thanks to the results of this discussion, we will get a single monolithic system view of all territories, all corners of our country on how there should be our forest legislation, what should be the strategy of the forest complex, which way should we go, what are our priorities», - said Valentik.

The head of the Udmurt Republic, Alexander Brechalov, said that in almost every district of Udmurtia there are issues related to forestry, and their discussion at the forum provides an opportunity not only to deal with their problems, but also to get acquainted with the experience of other regions. «Meanwhile, we must also recognize that there are naturally urgent problems at the federal level that require changes in legislation. I think that the forum will contribute to the development of such decisions», - he said.

According to the results of all stages of the National Forestry Forum, the organizers plan to hold a final forum in Moscow, at which, according to Nikolai Nikolayev, all the systemic problems identified in the process of work, the deputies «must embrace the legislative field».

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