Landowners' Willingness to Participate in the Green Forestation Plan in Taiwan
Green Forestation Plan (GFP) was expected to promote the reforestation of plains totaling 60,000 has within the first 8 years. Annual subsidies were budgeted at $120,000 per ha, and $2.4 million for 20 years. In this research we have surveyed landlords- opinions toward the GFP in an attempt to understand landlords- incentives for participating in the GFP and their levels of concern and agreement toward the policy design. Based our analysis of landlords- opinions on the policy design, we expect to derive appropriate complementary measures, establish effective promotional schemes, and raise the policy effectiveness of the GFP. According to the results of this research, there was still a relatively high proportion of population who were not aware of GFP; more than 50% of landlords were neutral or willing to participate given high reforestation subsidies; approximately 30% of landlords were unwilling to participate. In terms of the designs of GFP, more than 50% of respondents were concerned and agreed with the policy design. In terms of the period of this policy, 52.7% of respondents indicated that it should be shortened to 15 years or lower. In terms of the amount of the subsidy, 41.7% of respondents showed that it should be raised to approximately $250,000/ha. In terms of land area restrictions, 88.0% of respondents believed that the minimum should be lowered to 0.4 ha. More than 70% of respondents owned less than 0.4 has of land, and since they do not own enough land to be eligible for the program, more than 80% of landlords wished to lower the minimum requirements of land area. In addition, 59.3% of respondents were reluctant to participate in reforestation because their lands were too small to be eligible; 15.0% of respondents were reluctant because the duration was too long. Responses to the question about “how the policy can be adjusted to provide incentives for landlords- participation" revealed that almost 40% of respondents desired higher subsidies. Some policy suggestions are provided as follows: (1) many landlords are still unaware of the GFP so the government should enhance the promotion of the policy; (2) many landlords are unwilling to participate in GFP mainly because they do not own enough lands to be eligible, hence the government should consider adjusting its requirements for minimum agricultural land area; (3) for subsequent promotions on GFP, the government may consider targeting on the landlords with high income and high level of education; (4) because the subsidy of this policy alone provides limited help to landlords, the government should help the landlords to explore other revenue possibilities from afforestation in addition to the existing subsidies and raise the participation incentives.
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