Logging in the Solomon Islands. Photo credit: SIBC.

Logging in the Solomon Islands. Photo credit: SIBC.

The Government has imposed a moratorium on new registrations and applications for logging business activities, saying the new arrangement will increase employment rates and revenue from the forestry industry.

A statement from the Government Communications Unit says, present unsustainable harvesting of forest resources, and the high rate of illegal logging activities in the country makes the decision timely and necessary.

The statement says Cabinet reached the decision two weeks ago and advice on its enforcement will be given soon.

The Cabinet decision means strengthening the coordination of Ministries involved in issuing of business certificates and logging licence processes.

These include the Ministries of Finance and Treasury, Commerce and Industries, Lands and Survey and Forestry and Research.

Under the arrangement, these Ministries are expected to monitor and assess logging activities in the country.

The Ministries are also expected to review and improve the procedures and protocols in the forestry industry.

Meanwhile, the Permanent Secretary for Forestry and Research, Barnabas Anga says the monitoring and assessment process under the moratorium will cease any sub-contracting arrangements by logging companies to incapable companies.

Mr Anga says, the Ministry also trusts that related programs such as cattle rearing, cocoa, palm oil or other plantation sectors will be better developed with these improvements.

He says these are important programs that should generate employment opportunities and sustainable livelihoods which contribute towards productivity in the country’s resources and the economy.

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