SUNBIZ

Biggest Wood Chip Vessel From China Arrives In Fiji

Ratu Wiliame said the total value of this first shipment was about $6.8 million.
13 Mar 2021 11:00
Biggest Wood Chip Vessel From China Arrives In Fiji
Biggest wood chip vessel, Mater, berthed at Tropik Wood Industries Limited’s Wairiki Chip Mill at Nabouwalu in Bua, on March 12, 2021.

Mater is the biggest wood chip vessel to arrive in Fiji from China.

Tropik Wood Industries Limited board chairperson, Ratu Wiliame Katonivere, said, the vessel berthed safely at Wairiki Chip Mill in Nabouwalu, Bua on March 11.

This vessel is expected to load about 60,000 to 65,000 tonnes depending on the weight of the chips, which is dependent on the moisture content.

Ratu Wiliame said the total value of this first shipment was about $6.8 million.

“The loading would take about five days,” he said.

“We are expecting the vessel to depart next week Tuesday.”

Challenges

Ratu Wiliame said they don’t have any issue on the vessel loading.

However, there were continuous challenges of weather affecting log deliveries.

“We also have a challenge where the legal weight on logging trucks have been significantly lower thereby making it not feasible for cartage.

“Heavy penalties are being imposed if the loads are in breach of the weight restriction.”

Second Shipment

The company is expecting its next shipment on April 24.

However, this is very much dependent on the company’s ability to prepare cargo.

“We are collaborating with the relevant agencies to support the industry in allowing an agreed load height on the logging trucks,” he said.

“Meanwhile, we are expecting six shipment for 2021.”

Achievement

Ratu Wiliame said he felt proud that his team for being successful in securing a China market during challenging times.

He said the team did not not sit back but worked hard to secure alternative markets for wood chip commodity.

“The price is low.

“However, in securing these shipments we are able to support the many people who rely on the industry,” he said.

“With these shipments, we are able to drive much needed economic activity, create jobs and bring in much needed export earnings for the country.”

“I must say that it is not an easy task to secure markets in the global arena during such challenging times,” he said.

“I would like to thank our hard working team in Vanua Levu for making the cargo ready for this shipment, despite the challenges.

“We had severe natural disasters in the North, but our people took on the challenge and delivered.”

Feedback: shratikan@fijisun.com.fj



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