Switzerland-based Global Wood Holding will invest 900 million euros to grow Eucalyptus trees in Tunisia and export the wood to Europe, creating 45,000 jobs.
The project will be sited on 160,000 hectares in the Tunisian desert some 500 km south of Tunis.
The company’s deputy chairman Aldo Bonaldi, speaking at news conference with Tunisian State Lands Minister Fouad Dagfous, said he expected to export two million tonnes of wood each year.
The project would be completed over 15 years, he said.
Eucalyptus has attracted attention from development researchers and environmentalists. It is a fast-growing wood, its oil can be used for cleaning and functions as a natural insecticide, and it is sometimes used to drain swamps and thereby reduce the risk of malaria…
Generally, anyone who wishes to impede an earth-based project providing both jobs and improvements to the environment [like reforestation] can find some tame “analyst” to back up their criticism. It’s reaching a bit to oppose eucalyptus trees used for forest industries – but, I imagine that some junk science skeptics will come up with something.
Meanwhile, the Swiss and Tunisians are going ahead with providing jobs, income and reversing desertification.