Minister dismisses claims of illegal logging in PNG

​ There is no illegal logging in the country, says Forest Minister Douglas Tomuriesa.

He dismissed a Non-Government Organization  (NGO) allegation that a quarter of logs exported from the country are illegal logs.     

“In PNG we have been accused for too long about illegal logging practices in the country.”

Mr Tomuriesa said that all logs exported from legal logging permit holders were  certified to international standard.  

“We are so fortunate that when our logs are cut, number one you have forest officers that go out and grade the logs, and check that the log is legitimate and from a consignment (permitted logging) area.

“Number two we have an international monitoring company, SGS, who monitor the logs in all logging ponds in the country and put a tag that the logs have been checked by a forest officer and is not illegally harvested.   

“The number three, before a ship leaves, it gets clearance from Customs.”

“We have complied in every international standard and not once have our logs been impounded (when exported),” said Tomuriesa.

 Meanwhile, a NGO group, Global Watch, revealed that “its investigation show that nearly a third of the PNG’s timber export in 2014 came from illegal logging under agriculture permits (SABL).”

The Minister challenged Global Watch to prove its investigation when questioned  by Loop PNG.      

 “I ask the NGOs to come see me to release the facts of the documents.”  

“I dismiss it (the allegation).”


Picture source: Getty images

Charles Yapumi