Korean forestry organizations call for tree insurance

Owners decry lack of agricultural disaster insurance protecting private forests from wildfires and other natural disasters

Korean forestry organizations call for tree insurance

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

In the wake of recent natural disasters, several forestry organizations in South Korea are clamouring for insurance that protects tree owners.
The Forestry Cooperative in Korea and Korea Forest Service have said that there is currently no agricultural disaster insurance policy available for tree owners in the country to protect them from natural disasters such as wildfires, landslides, and pest infestations that may seriously damage their trees.
Even with two million private forest owners in South Korea, the Forestry Cooperative in Korea argued that the lack of a relevant insurance policy to protect their interests is a severely demotivating factor.

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In 2016, 1.37 million trees had to be cut down because of the pine wood nematode infestation. However, the tree owners were not compensated for their losses.
The Forestry Cooperative believes that it is within their legal rights to push for tree insurance due to the 2011 agricultural and fishery disaster insurance reform bill.
For the next three years, the two organizations will work together to establish an insurance sector that will serve forest owners, with insurance schemes that will cover seven tree types, including pine and cypress trees.
On the other hand, several government agencies have expressed scepticism regarding the proposal. The Ministry of Strategy and Finance said that it believes tree insurance is not an urgent need since trees are not quite vulnerable to natural disasters.

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