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Forestry ministry rejects claims of APP logging ramin woods JAKARTA - Director General of Forest Protection and Nature Conservation of the Forestry Ministry Darori said there were no logging activities by the Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) company in the Kalimantan and Riau provinces, in response to an accusation from environmental NGO Greenpeace.

"It is true that there is ramin logging, but it is not done by APP. It is the fault of the pulpwood suppliers who are selling it to APP," he told reporters here on Monday. "According to an evaluation by a Forestry Ministry team, there are possibilities of ramin logging being done by APP's wood suppliers in Kalimantan and Riau," Darori said.

"However, APP does not process ramin wood as raw material. The company sets it aside because it has no economic value," he added. "Ramin wood is more suitable for furniture because of its better and stronger quality," Darori noted.

He said after a report of ramin logging by APP was widely published and reported to the Police Headquarters and Forestry Ministry, Greenpeace seemed to be avoiding the case. Greenpeace Indonesia has also refused to be part of the case`s investigation team and is not willing to be a witnesses.

"It`s a pity that Greenpeace would not become a member of the team and is not willing to be a witness after it reported the case. Supposedly, if it is ready to report, it must also be ready to be a witness. But if the witness lies, they can become suspect," Darori explained.

Therefore, Darori assumed the allegations that were not backed by strong evidence were only a part of competition in the trade, adding such cases had also been experienced by APP when its products were embargoed in Australia.

"APP was embargoed in Australia. Its tissue products were not sold there because of accusations that the company was logging in natural forests. But after I checked in Jambi, I found the forest had not been cut down, as was campaigned in Australia," he said.

To resolve this case, the Forestry Ministry is trying to prove Greenpeace`s statements by conducting a laboratory test of APP products for traces of ramin wood. "The samples taken by Greenpeace were of ramin wood from an unknown location. There was no proof on whether it was from the APP concession area," Darori stated.

Previously, a year or two ago, a laboratory test was also conducted by researchers from the University of Gadjahmada, which proved there was no ramin wood content in APP products.

Besides, the Forestry Ministry has also asked APP to apply for permission to cut ramin trees, because the tree was under the category of plants that could be harvested with the ministry`s permission. "A ramin logging recommendation permit is issued to prevent unwanted things such as mixing of ramin woods. APP will also develop ramin by-products," Darori said.


Tags: greenpeace, ramin, wood, logging, accusation


Posted in Environment @ 21 May 2012 16:59 CET by Blog Bot · 'Blog' RSS feed · permalink






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