SUNBIZ

12% Timber Royalty Increase From Next Year Agreed

Landowners will receive 21 per cent more timber royalty from 2016 for all grades of indigenous timber. This follows fruitful meetings between the Fiji Sawmillers Association executives, the iTaukei Lands
17 Nov 2015 13:44
12% Timber Royalty Increase From Next Year Agreed

Landowners will receive 21 per cent more timber royalty from 2016 for all grades of indigenous timber.

This follows fruitful meetings between the Fiji Sawmillers Association executives, the iTaukei Lands Trust Board and the Ministry of Forestry.

Fiji Sawmillers Association president, Jay Dayal, said for the first time a deal like this has been struck in just two meetings.

This will be first increase for the forest landowners after 2008.

Mr Dayal did not immediately have figures available in terms on how much is paid as royalty, but he said it was substantial amount.

“This is the sole source of income for indigenous forest owners,” he said.

 

Challenges

Mr Dayal said over the period of years, the extraction has decrease simply because there has been a lot of competition from imported pine in Fiji.

“Although sawmillers had huge stocks, we have been facing problems with influx of imported pine in Fiji which is causing a lot of challenges for the local industry,” he said.

Mr Dayal said in spite of all this, they still went negotiated this rate keeping in mind the last rate increase was done in 2008.

“We thought to give a fair increase to the landowners so the benefits could trickle down to the forest owners,” he said.

“The native timber in Fiji is not an easy business. The number of sawmills in Fiji have reduced over time and it is only those who are financially capable who are operating now.

“So in spite of all these challenges, we have gone ahead and accommodated these increases. Also keeping in mind we have our social responsibility towards the forest landowners.”

Feedbackrachnal@fijisun.com.fj

 




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