EU Willing to Help PNG With Forestry Reforms

by PNG Business News - March 24, 2022

Photo: Rocky Roe - ABC

According to Ambassador Jernej Videtic, the European Union (EU) is willing to provide Papua New Guinea with hundreds of millions of Kina to help the country complete its forestry reforms.

“Some of the areas that the EU will help are in environmental data management for carbon trading, knowledge management, green jobs and growth, among others.

“PNG holds one of the largest primary forests of the world,” Videtic said.

Videtic, who spoke at the PNG Forest Authority’s workshop to celebrate the 2022 International Day of Forest 2022 said PNG was in danger of climate change. “Forestry, climate change and biodiversity are intrinsically connected specially for PNG,” he said.

“We are aware that your forest not only serves PNG but Europe and the entire world.

“We are ready to support PNG and allocate significant funds in the hundreds of millions of Kina for forestry, climate change and biodiversity programmes, three elements that cannot be separated,” he added.

Solan Mirisim, the Minister of Forestry, stated that it was critical to use and manufacture wood in an environmentally responsible manner.

“1.6 billion people depend on the forest for their livelihood and PNG is no exception,” he added.

PNGFA managing director John Mosoro said the authority was also implementing changes, including the much-discussed log export development charge, to guarantee that revenues flow to forest resource regions.


Reference: The National (22 March 2022). “EU ready to help reform forestry”.

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PNGFA signs MOU with Total Energies

The PNG Forestry Authority has struck a deal with Total Energies to build 10,000 hectares of industrial forest in the Varagadi district of Central Province. Within 20 years, the initiative aims to convert 800,000 hectares of main grasslands in PNG into industrial forest plantations. Goodwill Amos, director of the PNG Forest Research Institute, said Total Energies and PNG Forest Research Institute will collaborate on climate change concerns like carbon footprints and emissions reduction. “They are prosing for ten thousand hectares of grassland to develop in Kwila plantations. The varagadi area only contains 600 hectares.” “Part of the hectares to make up the ten thousand as wanted by Total Energies will be extended to Gulf and Bulolo in the Morobe Province,” he said. Varagadi is home to a population of 3,000 to 4,000 people, as well as 250 landowner representatives. Elliot Yamuje, chairman of Varagadi landowners, said the project will now enlist the help of local residents to plant trees. He went on to say that the initiative will assist not just financially, but also as a community in the battle against climate change. Other benefits to landowners include the establishment of a multi-state-of-the-art teak tree nursery. John Mosoro, the Managing Director of PNG Forestry, said that private investment through the Public Partnership is the way ahead and that Total Energies (PNG) Ltd's willingness and purpose are welcome and in line with the national government's objectives and goals. “Trees are acknowledged as an investment to mitigate increasing levels of carbon dioxide in the world’s atmosphere. The biological potential of plantation forests to sequester carbon can be scientifically estimated. Annual carbon storage in tropical forest plantations ranges from 0.8 to 24 t C per hectare per year.” Mr Mosoro went on to say that some outside cash will help them properly follow national government orders. “We appreciate the contribution by Total Energies to support PNG in establishing forest plantations towards meeting our budget,” he said. “The PNG Forestry Authority is committed to implementing the national government’s goals, objectives and priorities. We are committed to facilitating and maintaining a harmonious partnership with Total Energies in developing the forest plantations in Papua New Guinea.” The PNGFA's overall program goals include establishing 40,000 hectares of plantations every year with an average density of 400m3 per hectare on a 15 to 20-year cycle, yielding 16, 000, 000 m3 per year. At 3 jobs per hectare, forestry could generate 120, 000 jobs per year, or 2, 400 permanent employment in plantation forestry on 800,000 hectares. More jobs will be created in the harvesting, marketing, processing, and supporting infrastructure industries. Plantations will act as a carbon sink, storing 0.8 to 24 tons of carbon per hectare per year, depending on the tree variety. Each province will benefit from the establishment of at least one plantation, which will give employment, rural development, and a financial foundation.   Reference: Pacific Mining Watch (4 March 2022). “PNGFA signs MOU with Total Energies”.

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