“Without your continuous collaborations some of the activities, achievements and assistance to communities would have not been possible. I also thank you for your continuous understanding in facing hiccups and difficulties when dealing with our government officers,” says PS Vigulu.
He adds urging other interested forest related organisations, the forest industries, community base forest management groups or any forest related projects and individuals to come be part of this ongoing dialogue.
“The sustainable management, utilisation and rehabilitation of our forest resources must continue to be discussed and means to sustain the contribution of the resources to the national economy, provision of ecosystem services and contribution of forests in addressing climate change must be encouraged and enhanced.”
The Permanent Secretary highlighted that such platform is very important to ensure reporting of various forest stakeholder activities simultaneously executed through single and various collaborations is made know.
It also presents another opportunity to strengthen collaboration with broader base applications of the principle of sustainable management of forest resources across the country through various undertakings.
And to ensure to avoid reinventing of the wheels rather work hand in hand wherever needed and necessary to do so, he stresses.
“Over decades, this country depends heavily on forest resources for revenue generation; hence, forestry is an important sector that generated much of the government revenues in the past decades until recently.
“The last 5 years, an average of 2 million m3 of round logs were exported, this represents around SBD $500 million annually over the period, which represents approximately 20% of the government revenues and around 60% of export. That
showed, forestry sector is one of the major driver of the economy of this country.
“2016 was (2.7 million m3) followed by 2017 (2.6 million m3), 2018 was the history as we had exported a record of approximately 2.8m m3 of round logs from natural forests and plantation forests.
“To date, with reference to the Sustainable Logging Policy, the harvest may be 4 times unsustainable compared to the recently recommended total target of 700,000 m3 as annual sustainable cut for plantation and natural forests,” says the Permanent Secretary.
Dr Vigulu says as such the outgoing government through MoFR has been embarking on means to help reducing it to a sustainable rate. “That includes work on finalizing the review of the Forestry Act and the National Forest Policy that is concluding this month in preparation for submission to the new Government Cabinet.