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Association calls for vibrant measures to sustain the wood industry

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Stakeholders and policy-makers have been asked to work consciously towards a sustainable solution to the problem of low supply of lumber to the local timber market.

Togbe Mawufeame Fugah, President of the Small-scale Timber Millers Association (STMA), said this had become necessary since there was lack of adequate policy response to domestic timber demands.

Woodworkers, he said, were increasingly becoming worried at the flagrant violation to supply 20 per cent of sawn timber to the local market and stressed that this was hampering their operations and ability to meet the demands of the local market.

Addressing a General Meeting of the Association in Kumasi, Togbe Fugah described the development as unfortunate as per the EU-Ghana Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA), the government was to ensure that at least 20 per cent of certified sawn timber was supplied to the local market.

The meeting amongst others discussed the state of Ghana’s forest and wood industry, as well as reducing illegal tree felling to promote the conservation and sustainable management of tropical forests.

The President suggested the need for the Forestry Commission to effectively partner the Association in its tree-planting exercises, saying as more trees continued to be cut it was imperative that they were replaced to enhance the eco-system and bio-diversity.

Togbe Fugah indicated that being given the concession would greatly help the Association to complement efforts to supplying adequate lumber to the local market to sustain the wood industry.

He contended that in spite of being banned in 1998, chain saw milling continues to be a major supplier of Ghana’s domestic lumber needs and that the time has come to address the issue in an equitable way to reduce conflicts in the forestry sector.

Source: GNA

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