Forestry in Pakistan

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View of 'Fairy Meadow' at Nanga Parbat showing conifer forest of Picea smithiana and Pinus wallichiana.

The forestry sector of Pakistan is a main source of lumber, paper, fuelwood, latex, medicine as well as food and provide ecotourism and wildlife conservation purposes. Less than 4% of land in Pakistan is covered with forests.[1]


Total forest area coverage (source)
Parameter Pakistan Asia World
Total forest area in 2000 (000 ha) 2,361 504,180 3,869,455
Natural forest area in 2000 (000 ha) 1,381 375,824 3,682,722
Plantations area in 2000 (000 ha) 980 110,953 186,733
Total dryland area in 1981 (000 ha) 72,524 1,078,121 5,059,984
Percentage of forests ~3% ~20% ~29%


Main article: Flora of Pakistan


Lajbouk Lower Dir
Miandam Swat
Ecosystems area by type in 1993 (source)
Ecosystem type Pakistan Asia World
Shrublands, woodlands and grasslands 36% 37% 37%
Sparse or barren vegetation; snow and ice 34% 10% 16%
Cropland and natural vegetation mosaic 28% 34% 20%
Wetlands and water bodies 1% 2% 3%


The forests of Pakistan are a main source of lumber, paper, fuelwood, latex, medicine as well as human and animal food. Other minor products include resin (a fluid in tissue of Chir pine plant that becomes solid on exposure to the air) and 'mazri' (used for making baskets). The forests also provide for ecotourism and wildlife conservation purposes. Forests have also been planted in some areas like Thal Desert to avoid soil erosion and further desertification. Riparian zone along the river Indus have been managed to avoid excess flooding.

Annual production, 1996-1998 (source)
Parameter Pakistan Asia World
Total production (000m³) 31,528 1,111,958 3,261,621
Fuelwood production (000m³) 29,312 863,316 1,739,504
Industrial roundwood production (000m³) 2,217 268,470 1,522,116
Paper (thousand metric tons) 619 88,859 313,206


The Federal Bureau of Statistics provisionally valued this sector at Rs.25,637 million in 2005 thus registering over 3% decline of forests in Pakistan since 2000.[2] The main reasons of deforestation are urbanization, farming, overgrazing, global warming, and tourism development. This has led to severe consequences desertification, flooding and endangering of wildlife.

As a consequence to deforestation and changing land use patterns, the most critically affected ecosystems of Pakistan are:

  • Juniper forests of northern Baluchistan have been heavily harvested for timber and fuel wood.
  • eEcological changes in the Indus River riparian zone have drastically affected the riverine forests. Large tracts have been cleared for agriculture.
  • The Himalayan temperate forests are also under severe pressure from logging for timber and firewood, and from clearings for agriculture and human settlements.


The protected areas serve the purpose of conserving the forests and wildlife of Pakistan. National Conservation Strategy of 1993 was a major landmark of start of conservation of natural resources and wildlife in Pakistan. Resource-managed man-made forests like Changa Manga, Kamalia plantation and Chichawatni plantation have also been planted to serve purpose and conserve forests. Through conservation, a large region of Thal desert has been afforested.

Natural protected forests
Artificial resource managed forests


Research institutions[edit]


Botanical gardens[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Introduction to landscapes of Pakistan". Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  2. ^ "Federal Bureau of Statistics, National Accounts" (PDF). Government of Pakistan. Retrieved 10 August 2010. 
  3. ^ "Birir Valley Coniferous Forests". WWF Pakistan. Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  4. ^ "Remains of Jhangar scrub forest". Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  5. ^ "Jhangar Scrub Forest". WWF Pakistan. Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  6. ^ "Sulaiman Chilgoza Pine Forest". WWF Pakistan. Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  7. ^ "Zarghoon Juniper Forest". WWF Pakistan. Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  8. ^ "Khipro Reserve Forest". Mahadev Dheerani. Retrieved 14 August 2010. 
  9. ^

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]