Photo credit: PNG Forest Industries Association
Prime Minister Hon. James Marape has called on logging companies, landowners and the National Forest Authority (NFA) to be involved in reforestation of areas that have been logged.
He made the call on Friday, March 10, 2023, at remote Kurindal in Lasul-Baining Local Level Government (LLG), Gazelle, East New Britain, when launching the brand-new KKC Veneer Mill. This is a project fully supported by Gazelle District, East New Britain Provincial Government and landowners.
PM Marape said the Government – through NFA - would give K3 million for reforestation of the area being logged in Lasul-Baining LLG, and gave K1 million to Gazelle MP and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Jelta Wong, as the first installment.
“I want to ask the investor, landowners and the NFA to be involved in reforestation. When you chop down trees, you have a plant a new one, so that forestry can continue in a sustainable manner going forward,” he said.
“I want NFA to get K3 million from Log Export Development Levy (LEDL) funds and work with the company and landowners in forest regrowth, plantation forest, and bring in balsa to be grown here.
“You can grow 1000 balsa trees on one hectare of land, with one cubic metre of balsa earning K400, which means a family can make up to K20,000 per year from one hectare. This K20,000 is more than the pay of people working in towns and cities. There is money on the land.
“I want to see forestry being a sustainable business in the Lasul-Baining area now and into the future
PM Marape commended the East New Britain leadership at all levels for being proactive in sustainable development through logging, agriculture, fisheries and tourism and said this must continue.