Bioeconomy in the National Forest Strategy: A Comparison Study in Germany and the Czech Republic
and Objectives: Forest-based bioeconomies have been adopted as the national forest strategies in many European countries. However, in the Czech Republic, the bioeconomy has not been officially included in national policies. The main objective of the paper was to review the current forest policy in the Czech Republic in meeting the purposes of the European forest-based bioeconomy. To better understand the opportunities and shortcomings of the forest strategy and the implementation of a
... tion of a forest-based bioeconomy in the country, a comparison study in the Czech Republic and Germany was also carried out. Methods: A review of the forest strategies was done based on the following research questions: (1) How are the bioeconomy principles and priorities present in the Czech National Forest Programme (NFP) as reflected in the EU Forest Strategy, and how does the Czech forest strategy compare to that in Germany? (2) What is the situation concerning the national wood production and consumption to understand the opportunities and challenges of the bioeconomy implementation in the studied countries? Results: The Czech NFP was approved following the pan-European process for the protection of forests in Europe; therefore, it does not directly reflect the 2012 bioeconomy principles, although most of these approaches have been included in this strategy. Different national measures in two studied countries were revealed to achieve the objectives of the forest bioeconomy. The primary contribution from the Czech forestry to the bioeconomy is sustainable forest-based products. A forest bioeconomy is also targeted at mitigating climate change by providing forest biomass for bioenergy. Conclusions: The Czech Republic is in the midst of the adoption process of the bioeconomy strategy. The main challenges faced by the forest-based sector in the country is to fulfil the demand for sustainable forest biomass and high value-added products. Multisectoral collaboration, business diversification, and education for public consumers are needed to increase the growth and job opportunities of the bioeconomy sector in rural areas.