Over 2,800 hectares of Vietnamese forest burn every year

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Vietnam lost around 2,806 hectares of forests to fire every year over the past decade, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development reported Thursday.

Statistics by the ministry listed 7,870 forest fires that burned down 30,867 hectares of forests between 2001 and 2011.

Most of the burned forests were located in the Central Highlands, the northern mountainous region and the south-central region.

The statistics also blamed 80 percent of the fires on local farmers, who often accidently sparked forest fires while burning small trees to make fields or burning their own fields after harvests to start anew.

According to the ministry, Vietnam is still poorly equipped to fight forest fires.

The country needed four days and the efforts of nearly 1,500 people to put out a fire at the Hoang Lien-Sa Pa National Park in northern Vietnam early this month after around 100 hectares were destroyed.

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Figures from the ministry in another report last December said Vietnam loses nearly 32,000 hectares of forests every year, including 60 percent to farming, industrial zones, irrigation and hydropower projects, and 6 percent to illegal logging.

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