Regional Workshop on Tracking options for Sustainable Management and trade of Yartsa Guenbub in Kailash Landscape

Hon'ble Moaf Lyonpo with the Regional Workshop Participants
Hon’ble Moaf Lyonpo with the Regional Workshop Participants

8-13 August 2015, Paro: His Excellency Hon’ble MoAF Lyonpo graced the opening of the Regional Workshop on Tracking options for Sustainable Management and trade of Yartsa Guenbub in Kailash Landscape. The 18 participants from India, Nepal, China and Bhutan will share knowledge and the best practices in Cordyceps management and trade in order for the Kailash Sacred Landscape (KSL) member countries to develop and refine their management plans building based on its sustainability. This regional workshop is jointly organised by the Department of Forests and Park services (DoFPS) and the International Center for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD).

Hon’ble MoAF Secretary, Dasho Tenzin Dhendup stated that the Sacred Kailash Landscape Conservation and development initiative as one of the flagship transboundary landscape  program of ICIMOD funded by GIZ and also pointed out the key objective of this as a regional collaboration among the member countries and promoting sharing of knowledge and best practices among the countries.

Furthermore Dr. Rajan Kortu, Regional Manager Transboundary landscape, ICIMOD  highlighted KSL as one of the key programs of ICIMOD landscape which is very  important initiative linking co-operations from India, Nepal and China, Calling it as a ‘true transboundary cooperation’. He shared that one of the key goals set for 20 years as to achieve the local community of KSL to manage and protect the KSL through which both the livelihood and ecosystem can be benefitted.

Dr. Rajan Kortu said they had build a basis of knowledge and learning  on cordyceps for two years from India and Nepal. With which they had concluded a need for regional discussions. They had also found that the issues were mostly related to policies and decisions on Cordyceps and policies and decisions on government which will help regulate and govern the cordyceps management.

The cordyceps is the major source of income for many rural people especially the highlanders and  plays a very important role in social, culture and economic value of the people. However Lyonpo stated that due to change in market dynamics of the cordyceps it has lead to various social, economic and ecological implications.

‘The high economy from cordyceps is diverting the attention of traditional cordyceps harvesting activities including sheep and yak rearing but the huge rush for this high value commedity continues to exert pressure on landscape due to over harvesting and also littering during the collection season. There are serious conflict related to access, benefit sharig and trade of this commodity.’ stated Lyonpo.

Lyonpo said ‘despite the current efforts in strengthening the governance of managing the cordyceps, its sustainability still continues to be the main concern’ and hence expressed his contentment of having this regional workshop at an appropriate time.

Similarly  Dr. Rajan Kortu had stated ‘Bhutan has a very good experience on Yartsa Guenbub and the way that the Bhutanese government has governed is something to be learnt from’. He expressed that they look forward for very absorbing three days learning and to be able to bring changes in management in Cordyceps in their country.

On the other hand Ms. Corninna Wallrap, Technical Advisor GIZ said there are lots of challenges because of the transboundary issues. She said it needed national policies, national guidelines and principles adding  that the workshop gave a good platform to learn integrated approach and the transboundary perspectives.

Since sustainable collection and trade of Cordyceps is a transboundary issue, the regional workshop will facilitate the efforts and cooperation to ensure its sustainable management.  The workshop will also deliberate on issues around policies and practices that will assist exchange of knowledge and experiences in its management. Generally the three days workshop will help adopt proper management and sustainable harvest of the natural resources thereby assisting to develop the proper guidlines, principles and trade related activities in the regions.

Reported by Tashi Yangzom, ICS with Photos by Choidup Zangpo

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