Ayutthaya tightens measures against illegal wood trade

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AYUTTHAYA, 30 November 2014  The Ayutthaya Provincial Natural Resources and Environment Office is now checking entrepreneurs in the wood industry in an attempt to bring the illegal wood trade under control.

The Head of the Ayutthaya Provincial Natural Resources and Environment Office (NREO) Surachai Ajolboon has revealed that government agencies have checked up on the 701 wood industry entrepreneurs in the province.

The check-up has shown that only about 100 entrepreneurs out of 701 have had their permit extended, while the rest claimed to in the gap phase to keep the permit valid.

The authorities have also found about 10,000 sheets of teak, 79 logs of Siamese Rosewood, and about 200 logs and processed wood held without proper authorization. Some companies were found to have reported a false wood list.

The Head of the Ayutthaya NREO said that the check-up is in accordance with the NCPO’s policy to tackle the illegal wood trade and forest crime.

He said that although Ayutthaya province does not have any forest or conservation areas, the province will strictly prosecute those who violate forest law, will improve the information management of the wood companies, and rehabilitate natural resources.

He also added that those who wanted to use a chainsaw should contact the Natural Resources and Environment Office for permission. The usage of a chainsaw without permission will result in 5 years imprisonment, up to 100,000 baht fine, or both, and the chainsaw will be seized.