Tuesday, 13 May 2008 12:55 PM

Sogavare Calls on Government to Address Depleted Forests

The Leader of Opposition, Manasseh Sogavare, has called on the government to do more in addressing the fast depleting forest sector.

Mr. Sogavare made the comments after the launching of the Medium Term Fiscal Strategy 2008- 2013. The document outlined the current state of the national economy along with the challenges ahead. The document also highlighted measures the government has identified to ensure fiscal stability.

Mr. Sogavare said that while the report projected a decline in government revenue, as a result of the depletion of the natural stock of round logs, there are no specific measures to ensure that the remaining logging area are developed properly. Mr. Sogavare stated that this is important as it would ensure that the country continues to earn the much needed revenue from round log exports.

Mr Sogavare says that increasing the tax on the exportation of round logs is not the solution. He said that there is a need for some sort of a bridging revenue support if the government is serious in reforming the forestry sector.

Having said that the Opposition Leader stated that he would welcome, and support, any well-researched macroeconomic strategies that would address the country's challenges looming in the medium term.