Supreme Court

EoF News / 17 April 2008

PEKANBARU (EoF News)—The Government’s team for solving Riau’s Illegal Logging Problem called on pulp and paper industry to await upcoming instruction which recently being prepared by the Supreme Court in dealing with utilization of seized logs raided by the Police, media report said.
Armand Malolongan, a member of the team, told the press Monday (14 April 2008) that in an attempt to avoid further legal dispute on one-year-old logs seized by Riau Police, a legal instruction from the Supreme Court urgently needed as wood utilization would differ from normal process, Republika daily reported Tuesday (15/4/2008).

Armand said that the instruction decided from the highest court needed due to the seized logs in Riau would be obtained not through auction process as usual, but by paying guarantee fee.

“We have to wait the MA [Supreme Court] instruction. Hopefully, in the near future, the upcoming instruction would be available,” said Arman.

He said the team -set up by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono last year- was estimating the commercial value of the 560,000 cubic meter logs.

Three senior officials, Coordinating Minister for Political, Law, and Security Affairs Widodo A.S, Minister of Forestry Malam Sambat Kaban, and The Indonesian Chief of Police General Sutanto would visit the seized logs. “In order to make the seized logs run smoothly,” he added.

Last month, CV Gunung Mas won the bidding promoted by the Pelalawan Police, Riau, in obtaining seized logs that confiscated by the police in concession of PT Madukoro, a timber company affiliated to Asia Pacific Resources International Holdings Limited (APRIL).

Minister of Forestry Kaban criticized that the auction of seized logs of PT Madukoro is against the Law, but the police defended that the bidding complied with the existing regulations.

EoF learned that series of illegal logging raids conducted by the police since February 2007 in Riau have discouraged forestry-based company to clearcut natural forest which mostly supplied to two pulp and paper companies in the province, APRIL and Asia Pulp & Paper (APP).

Bisnis Indonesia daily reported today (17/4/2008) said that illegal logging raids performed by the police affected to the supply to pulp industry.

"Indonesian pulp production in 2008 is predicted to decrease to 75%. However, this condition shows strong indication that industry mostly relying upon the illegal logging [practice]," the daily said.