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Lao youngsters rally to plant trees, celebrate children’s day

Students joined tree planting activities at the Lao Youth Union in Dongmakkhai village, Xaythany district of Vientiane on Monday to mark National Arbour Day, International Children’s Day (June 1) and World Environment Day (June 5).
The tree planting ceremony was attended by Prime Minister, Mr Thongloun Sisoulith; Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance, Mr Somdy Duangdy; Secretary of the Lao Youth Union, Mr Alounxay Sounnalath, along with ministers, representatives of various organisations and secondary school students.

The event was one of many around the country to celebrate youth and encourage young people to care for the environment through tree propagation.
Mr Thongloun said this year it was especially important to celebrate children and tree planting given the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on people’s lives.
He said the government understood that the healthy development of young people was vital for the nation’s future and noted the ongoing financial support to the Lao Youth Union.
Plans for the near future included the construction of a vocational centre for young people to develop their knowledge and skills to the highest standards, he added.
“The juniors of today will become the quality people and officials of the future, and through their strength, we will continue to develop society,” the PM explained.
Senior government officials presented souvenirs to students during the ceremony to mark the occasion.
The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has directed provincial and district authorities to promote tree planting as well as fire prevention strategies among local communities to restore forests.
Provincial departments of agriculture and forestry have been urged to work harder to mobilise volunteers to control forest fires, and everyone should take preventative actions, especially in the dry season.
Laos planned to plant more than 11 million trees on 10,000 hectares leading up to National Arbour Day as part of efforts to restore forest cover to 70 percent of the total land area by the end this year.
The tree planting will also help the government to achieve its target of 400,000 hectares of natural forest restoration by the end of 2020.
Some 20 National Protected Areas cover 14 percent of the country with Dong Natad and Dong Phou Vieng in Savannakhet province and Phou Khao Khuay in Vientiane being some leading examples.

By Sangkhomsay Bubphanouvong
(Latest Update June 2, 2020)

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