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General News Tue, 30 Sep 1997

Timber Association Wants Ban On Lesser Known Tree Species Lifted

Takoradi,(Western Region) 28, Sept. The National Treasurer of the Ghana Timber Association (GTA), Mr Isaac Kofi Nketia, has appealed to the Government to lift the ban on the exportation of Esa, Yaya, Otie, and Afrakoma logs. Mr Nketia at Takoradi at the weekend that sawmillers ''are.... not interested in these species because of the strain they put on their processing facilities. Some of the trees are either poisonous or have offensive smell''. He claimed that chain saw operators ''are destroying the species which can fetch the country some foreign exchange.'' Mr Nketia, the Managing Director of NOBCO Timbers, commended the Government for its prompt intervention to save the Western Veneer and lumber Company (WVLC), from total collapse. He said the government's decision to pay the salaries of WVLCs workers had brought industrial peace and appealed to them to reciprocate the gesture by working harder. The National Treasurer commended Mr. Alhassan Atta, the Acting Managing Director, ''for the steps he has initiated in processing more logs.'' and asked timber contractors to supply the company with more logs to keep it in business. Although WVLC has a very large concession, it is unable to harvest more logs due to the age of its logging machinery, Mr Nketia said and called on the Government to grant the company a loan to either acquire or rehabilitate the old logging machinery.

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