Last update: 20-Dec-2013 4:14 am
Friday, December 20, 2013
Trinidad & Tobago Guardian Online
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Lumber industry to be revamped
In a move to establish a more equitable allocation system of teak and pine and promote the revival of the local furniture manufacturing sector, Minister of the Environment and Water Resources Ganga Singh has started talks with various stakeholders of the industry.
Singh chaired the first round of discussions which drew over 30 sawyers from around the country to the ministry’s head office at the International Waterfront Centre on September 3. The sawyers voiced their concerns over the existing teak and pine allocation system to which Singh gave his assurance that the distribution process will be reviewed to make it more transparent and equitable.
Additionally, Singh listened to the views of 32 local furniture manufacturers at a meeting on September 10 at the Caroni Swamp Visitor’s Centre. The manufacturers expressed their concerns over the quantity and quality of raw materials made available to them by local sawyers. Singh recommended that a local body of furniture manufacturers be established and invited the group to submit a written proposal to the ministry in relation to the enhancement of the teak and pine allocation system.
Singh expressed his thanks to all participants for their contributions and desire to actively pursue discussions with other relevant stakeholders of the teak and pine industry.
“Change is required in the local lumber industry. The ultimate goal is to ensure that teak and pine can be supplied to our local manufacturers at a competitive price. Why should we import cabinets made of local wood? I want to see stakeholders throughout the teak and pine industry add value to their products and be profitable. Together we can develop a system that is in the best interest of all,” he said. The ministry will continue its stakeholder discussions over the coming weeks.
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