All HPH, HTI, HTR and Advanced Industry Management Units must comply with the Timber Legality Verification Standard (SVLK) and Sustainable Production Forest Management (SFM) as stipulated in Permenhut P.38 / 2009 jo P.68 / 2011 concerning SVLK and PHPL. For companies that do not take care of SVLK and PHPL certification, do not expect your business to be accepted on the international market. This means that the target countries for timber exports from Indonesia cannot receive illegal wood anymore.

Since 2010 Indonesia has implemented mandatory certification rules, namely concerning the Timber Legality Verification Standard (SVLK) and Management of Lestasi Production Forests (PHPL). The implementation of the Timber Legality and SFM certification regulated through Ministerial Regulation No. 38/2009 in conjunction with P 68/2011 basically aims to ensure legal and sustainable forest management. The question is why is SVLK and PHPL important in the trade in timber forest products? The demands of timber market countries require timber legality, because they do not want to buy illegal timber forest products. SVLK and PHPL also become important to suppress the rapid activities of destruction of natural forests as a result of legal logging and illegal logging. SVLK and PHPL are the solution.

The problem is that the implementation of a timber legality verification system (SVLK) from upstream to downstream is apparently not easy. The progress of the means to win this market is still relatively slow and continues to reap doubts, especially from among the community forest developers. In fact, with HTI, community forests are claimed to have been able to become the backbone of the national timber industry. Can the government convince the market? Not necessarily too. While SVLK is not free. So, don’t be surprised when the costs that come out are questioned about the benefits that will be obtained. Especially if the issue of money is touching the business people. Not only in the industry, but also in the upstream, namely community forests. Many unit management (UM) such as HPH and HTI also felt that this policy was quite burdensome and could have a bad indication of the timber business they were involved in. Unfortunately, like it or not, not only UM, but also people’s efforts must accept this fact, that it is time for timber trade both for local consumption and for exports to be legal with proof of certification.

This is the central issue when the SVLK regulated by the Minister of Forestry Regulation (Permenhut) No.P.38 / 2009 jo P / 68/2011 will be followed up immediately by the revision of the Minister of Trade Regulation (Permendag) No.20 / 2008 concerning Provisions on the Export of Products Forestry Industry. Based on this rule, the wood-based industry must hold the SVLK. The same is true for sources of raw materials. However, based on data from the Ministry of Forestry, until the middle of March 2012, industries that had obtained a new timber legality certificate were 210 industrial units. Whereas the number of industries, including the furniture and handicraft industries which are the main pillars of the export performance of wood products, is estimated to reach 4,000 units.

In terms of the source of raw materials the same. Up to now only 12 units holding Timber Forest Product Utilization Permits (IUPHHK) have obtained timber legality certificates. In fact, there are 292 IUPHHK Natural Forest (HPH) units and 249 Industrial Plantation IUPHHK (HTI) units registered in the Ministry of Forestry. While from the side of non-forestry land, community forests, it is not less dragging. Until now, only seven community forest management units have obtained timber legality certificates. The lack of certified community forest units needs attention. Because the community forest is now one of the main suppliers of the wood processing industry, leaving the HPH. Together with HTI, the Forestry is claimed by the Ministry of Forestry to supply about 80% of industrial raw materials with a total of around 50 million cubic meters.

For business people, from the people’s class to the conglomerate, the cost of the costs incurred is always a central issue. A number of UM (timber business actors) expressed their frustration: “To be honest, we are actually nervous about the certification that must be done. What are the economic benefits if we do certification? Will there be a price difference? If so, the community must inevitably conduct voluntary certification. “While since 2009, the Indonesian government has begun to obtain Non-Tax State Revenues (PNBP) of Rp.2.5 to Rp.3 trillion from the Timber Legality Verification System (SVLK). The United Kingdom’s Minister of International Development (DFID) Andrew Mitchell on February 14, 2012 in Balikpapan stressed that the DFID had also contributed enough to this system by disbursing no less than 2 million pounds during 2011 to help various Indonesian forestry programs , including the SVLK program.

The problem is that until now the ‘bar code’ has not been issued to support the legality requirements. The logging mark of the company has participated in the SVLK by installing a bar code on the felled timber. In addition to containing data about the wood in question such as length, diameter, species, even to the day and date when the tree is cut down and from which felling block, the bar code also contains contributions and obligations that have been fulfilled by the company. Regarding this matter, Listya Kusumawardhani, Director of Forestry Contribution Development and Forest Product Circulation (BIK-PHH) of the Indonesian Ministry of Forestry said that “the bar code can only be issued after the company fulfills all the obligations outlined based on the timber trade system. including the Reforestation Fund (DR) and Forest Resource Provision (PSDH) or also called Forest Product Contributions (IHH). The new SVLK is mandatory for companies that achieve production or produce up to 60,000 cubic meters of timber per year. “Of the 157 active wood industries , only 97 companies have SVLK for natural forests and 22 companies for plantation forests. So there are only 119 companies that have adopted this system, “Listya said.

Whereas related to the concerns of the timber business actors related to the benefits of certification, the companies participating in the SVLK will benefit because the wood products or goods made from the raw materials of the products are certified by Indonesia Legal Wood or V-Legal Marking. Of course it is easier for businesses to carry out export activities to market countries such as Europe which require timber legality. With the certificate, consumers in Europe and Japan, as well as Australia, no longer question the legality or origin of wood, including the company’s concern for a protected and sustainable forest. Unfortunately, the certification processes of both SVLK and PHPL must also be monitored by civil society or NGOs in accordance with Minister of Forestry P.38 / 2009 jo P.68 / 2011 concerning Independent Monitors.

To ensure the accountability and credibility of this mandatory certification system and in an effort to improve forest governance, all parties involved in the preparation of this policy also agreed on the entry of an independent monitoring component in the institution of this mandatory certification system. Independent monitors who are civil society groups in the forestry sector monitor the processes and results of certification and are also involved in the process of evaluating and improving the system. The Forest Independent Monitoring Network (JPIK) is one component of the Independent Monitor as referred to in the rules regarding the SVLK. JPIK was formed in September 2011 as a form of civil society participation in monitoring the development of the forestry sector that is legal, fair and respects the preservation of the environment.

By Pietsau Amafnini.
JASOIL Coordinator for Tanah Papua / Focalpoint JPIK West Papua.