Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies has approved the amended Forest Sector Code outlining transformation guidelines aligned to the Amended Codes of Good Practice for the forestry sector.
“The forestry sector is one of the sectors that can stimulate and accelerate rural development, because most of its operations are primarily situated in rural and underdeveloped areas,” said Davies.
The code, which will be reviewed within two years of gazette, to set new targets, will also impact on other manufacturing industries, including the furniture industry, with the scope of application for the amended sector code including all enterprises involved with commercial forestry and first level processing of wood products.
The code highlights subsectors such as growers, contracting, fibre, sawmilling, pole and charcoal.
Further, the amended Forest Sector Code prioritises the empowerment of designated groups, such as broad-based schemes, employment share ownership plans and communities, under the ownership element.
“The prioritisation is done to ensure that, not only are ownership patterns being changed, but also that poverty and income inequalities are addressed. The prioritisation is reflected in the fact that the ownership targets for the designated groups have been set at 7.5%, which is higher than the 3% of the generic Codes,” Davies pointed out.
The codes also indicated an increase in the allocation of points for enterprise development.