Fomenting the Bamboo Building industry in Timor-Leste: Changing public perception, enhancing research and land governance with social partnerships

Rosangela Tenorio, Jairo Da Costa Junior

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The Bamboo industry worldwide is accelerating, with a global market of USD 68.8 billion in 2018 and expected growth of 5% between 2019-2025. China is the leader of this market with 22 tonnes of bamboo per hectare of production. Timor-Leste has the potential to produce over 20 tonnes of bamboo per hectare and the opportunity to drive development in a sustainable way. The experience from China over the last 20 years shows that under the right conditions, bamboo can be a lead sector for rural industrialization and large-scale poverty reduction. Although abundant in bamboo resources, it is clear the need for comprehensive change towards investments, research and development across the entire bamboo supply chain in Timor-Leste and in particular to foster the growth of a bamboo building industry. Nevertheless, bamboo is not yet recognized as a valuable material. Tourism, governmental or institutional structures do not use bamboo, and the public perception is negative or neutral. The paper reviews the resources and implementation strategies that have been established to date and discuss the barriers and opportunities to advance a local and export bamboo building industry in Timor-Leste in the foreseeable future. The authors argue for the role of demonstration projects that promote added-value design and acceptance, along with a review of government legislation and regulatory frameworks. These strategies can remove barriers and contribute towards an increase in local production, demand and consumption. Most importantly, they foster the acceptance of bamboo as a contemporary building material while promoting sustainable development.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-12
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Bamboo and Rattan
Volume19
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 30 Dec 2020

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