The National Parks, Wildlife and Plant Conservation Department is exploring opportunities to work with its partners in neighbouring countries to step up efforts to protect national parks with transboundary features.
The department has invited forestry officials from Laos to join the two-day workshop on transboundary protected area management, which was kicked off today. It would then invite those from Malaysia to attend a similar workshop next week.
The department’s National Parks Office’s director Dr Songtam Suksawang said Thailand has at least 11 national parks next to protected areas of Cambodia, Myanmar, Malaysia and Laos.
To protect the areas more effectively, transboundary cooperation is needed, he said.
According to Songtam, there are two critical national park clusters connected to Laos. The Phukha, Mae Jarim, Khun Nan and Sri Nan parks, all in Nan province, have boundaries shared with the Laotian Nam Poui National Biodiversity Conservation Area.
The other spot is Pha Tham National Park in Ubon Ratchathani province, which has a boundary shared with Phou Xieng Thong in Laos.
"We aim to boost knowledge and understanding about the importance of such transboundary cooperation with our partners, as well as exchange knowledge and experience. At the same time, we are exploring appropriate practices to boost transboundary conservation work, while forging the network,” said Songtam.
Joining the event are representatives from Kasetsart University’s Forestry Faculty, the Freeland Foundation and others.