22 Aug 2007

Greens say New Zealand Government must act now over illegally imported timber from Pacific

6:52 am on 22 August 2007

The New Zealand Greens Party say the New Zealand government must take action to stop the importation of illegally milled timber from Pacific countries, such as Papua New Guinea and Solomon Islands.

The Greens' co-leader, Russel Norman, says there should be an immediate suspension of kwila timber imports, until a regime that can prove its source is in place.

The New Zealand Forestry Minister Jim Anderton says the Government plans to consult the industry, importers and retailers, over the development of rules to ensure that wood imports are from legally harvested timber.

Dr Norman says last year New Zealand imported nearly 120 million US dollars of wood furniture and furniture parts from China, Malaysia and Indonesia, which he says was largely made with illegally obtained timber.