May 4, 2020

WRI applauds new progress to secure SVLK

JAKARTA ( World Resources Institute (WRI) Indonesia Country Director Nirarta "Koni" Samadhi has stressed that the move by Indonesian Environment and Forestry Minister Siti Nurbaya to declare that Indonesia 's timber legality assurance system (SVLK) remains in force was very appropriate.

He conveyed this in writing when asked for his opinion on the minister's statement that SVLK will continue to be applied as an export requirement for products from the Indonesian forestry industry, as recently reported by (May 1).

“The position taken by Minister Nurbaya is very reasonable in the context of environmental and forest protection,” Koni affirmed.  

Regarding the statement by Minister Nurbaya that an inter-ministerial agreement had been reached to suspend and revise the recent trade ministry regulation that removed the SVLK requirement, Koni said this was very important. 

“Coordination between sectors is vital for producing policies that take economic interests into account, together with environmental, forest and social welfare considerations,” he asserted.

Despite the COVID-19 outbreak situation, law enforcement actions against illegal logging practices remain one of the top priorities for Indonesian forestry authorities. The following photos show the process of confiscating illegal logs by a ministry team in West Papua province.

There are substantial reasons underlying Minister Nurbaya's declaration, as reported by (May 1), that SVLK is one of Indonesia's major investments for the long-term interests of sustainable forestry businesses as well as for the benefit of Indonesia's forests. 

Revision process

WRI also stated that the process of revising the trade ministry regulation that negated SVLK by engaging relevant ministries and stakeholders, as explained by Minister Nurbaya and reported by (May 1), is also the right move.

“This approach is pitch-perfect,” Koni confirmed.

The reaction of relevant stakeholders to Minister Nurbaya’s move to ensure that Indonesia's timber legality assurance system continues to be maintained has been overwhelmingly positive.

This includes a statement from CEO of The Timber Trade Federation David Hopkins to the twitter feed (May  1).

Hopkins wrote: “We are extraordinarily pleased to see the news and encompassing support from within Indonesia and external stakeholders to continue SVLK measures and high standards for legal sustainable forestry. A great day for our forests, futures and FLEGT."